7.7/10
1,300
11 user 127 critic

The Autobiography of Nicolae Ceausescu (2010)

Autobiografia lui Nicolae Ceausescu (original title)
The film explores the image of the Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceausescu using unknown official footage from the Romanian National Television and National Film Archives.

Director:

Andrei Ujica

Writer:

Andrei Ujica
9 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Documentary | History | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
Directors: Harun Farocki, Andrei Ujica
Stars: Ion Caramitru, Elena Ceausescu, Nicolae Ceausescu
Comedy | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A railway chief delays a NATO train transporting military equipment during the war in Kosovo in 1999.

Director: Cristian Nemescu
Stars: Armand Assante, Jamie Elman, Razvan Vasilescu
Comedy | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Several urban legends of Communist Romania are dramatized.

Directors: Hanno Höfer, Razvan Marculescu, and 3 more credits »
Stars: Diana Cavallioti, Radu Iacoban, Vlad Ivanov
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Cosmonaut Sergei Krikalev is the focus of this chronicle of life on the Russian space station Mir, showing what outer space is really like. In addition to the routine day-to-day activities ... See full summary »

Director: Andrei Ujica
Stars: Anatoli Arzebarski, Sergei Krikalev, Helen Sharman
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A local talk show host organizes an alcoholic professor and a pensioner known for playing Santa Claus to decide whether there was ever a revolution in their town Vaslui.

Director: Corneliu Porumboiu
Stars: Mircea Andreescu, Teodor Corban, Ion Sapdaru
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A police officer refuses to arrest a young man for offering drugs to his friends.

Director: Corneliu Porumboiu
Stars: Dragos Bucur, Vlad Ivanov, Ion Stoica
The Arbor (2010)
Documentary | Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Portrayal of the late Bradford playwright Andrea Dunbar.

Director: Clio Barnard
Stars: Manjinder Virk, Christine Bottomley, Natalie Gavin
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Clara and Hans are left-wing terrorists who have been sought by police for almost fifteen years. Their increasingly rebellious daughter Jeanne begins to pose a threat to their security when... See full summary »

Director: Christian Petzold
Stars: Julia Hummer, Barbara Auer, Richy Müller
Documentary | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A year in the life of a city grappling with urban violence.

Director: Steve James
Stars: Tio Hardiman, Ameena Matthews, Toya Batey
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
Director: Chris Marker
Stars: Georges Rouquier
Documentary | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

The history of Dawson City, the gold rush town that had a historical treasure of forgotten silent films buried in permafrost for decades until 1978.

Director: Bill Morrison
Stars: Kathy Jones-Gates, Michael Gates, Sam Kula
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

This artful and intimate meditation on the legendary storyteller examines her life, her works and the powerful themes she has confronted throughout her literary career.

Director: Timothy Greenfield-Sanders
Stars: Toni Morrison, Hilton Als, Oprah Winfrey
Edit

Cast

Credited cast:
Nicolae Ceausescu ... Himself (archive footage)
Elena Ceausescu ... Herself (archive footage)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Stefan Andrei Stefan Andrei ... Himself (archive footage)
Gheorghe Apostol Gheorghe Apostol ... Himself (archive footage)
Ana Aslan Ana Aslan ... Herself (archive footage)
Ion Avram Ion Avram ... Himself (archive footage)
Iosif Banc Iosif Banc ... Himself (archive footage)
Eugen Barbu Eugen Barbu ... Himself (archive footage)
Elena Barbulescu Elena Barbulescu ... Himself (archive footage)
Lica Barbulescu Lica Barbulescu ... Herself (archive footage)
Alexandru Barladeanu Alexandru Barladeanu ... Himself (archive footage)
Ion Birlea Ion Birlea ... Himself (archive footage)
Emil Bobu Emil Bobu ... Himself (archive footage)
Emil Bodnaras Emil Bodnaras ... Himself (archive footage)
Leonid Brezhnev ... Himself (archive footage)
Edit

Storyline

During the summary trial that he and his wife were submitted to, Nicolae Ceausescu is reviewing his long reign in power: 1965-1989. From a formal point of view, The Autobiography of Nicolae Ceausescu proves that it is possible to only use existing images to yield films focused on recent history, yet with an epic vein similar to that of the historical fiction cinema. This is an eminently syntactic endeavor, where montage plays a twofold part: mise-en-scene, as it builds scenes that do not exist as such in the rushes, and classical editing, connecting scenes together. Written by Cannes Film Festival

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

Romania | Germany

Language:

Romanian | English

Release Date:

9 September 2011 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Autobiography of Nicolae Ceausescu See more »

Filming Locations:

Romania See more »

Edit

Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,644, 11 September 2011

Gross USA:

$34,023

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$67,093
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
The spectacular reality of Nicolae Ceausescu
4 February 2016 | by tributarystuSee all my reviews

Having been born at the end of the 80s, my recollection of communist Romania is negligible. So for me, this wealth of archival footage represents less an excursion into dreary eyed nostalgia, but rather a fascinating, vicarious experience. It is unfathomable to think that this is a part of our human heritage, and the film leaves the impression of being a document of society, culture and politics that's out of this world.

This other-worldliness is achieved through the exclusive use of archival footage, to the detriment of any present-day commentary. The biographical tale of Ceausescu leads us through several decades of communist Romania, and is bound by the trial and execution of the former dictator. Surprisingly, although my knowledge of recent Romanian history is fairly limited, there was little actual information in the the events and moments portrayed which I was unfamiliar with. I'm not sure that's a good thing, for such a long runtime - all it says, to me, is that you should probably not watch this documentary if your aim is solely to gain a straightforward understanding of history.

What it does do very well, is synthesize the essence of what the public frame of mind was at the time. It ebbs and flows beautifully, from the fascination of the Western world with Ceausescu after his stance on the invasion of Prague, to his ultimate isolation within the communist block. In this, as well as in much of the propagandistic materials made for public consumption, there is a strong sense of falsehood meshed together with a (willing) naivety of the everyday folk. The film is at its best when it manages to effectively contain these paradoxes of truth, the double-standards of pre-89 communist dogma, and the absurdity of turning a mildly charismatic, semi-literate individual into an egomaniac with absolute power.

In between all these moments, you've got Ceausescu delving into sheer silliness - with the cherry on top being his speech on how Romania will only return to capitalism when "pigs fly", then joking on the advances of genetics only to realize this is not quite the right thing to say and reinforcing the initial statement with raised pitch and ample gesticulation. There are many scenes like this, of various sizes, that shape Ceausescu as a character and the warped world-view provided by public television. At three hours, one could argue the documentary is overlong, as certain elements become repetitive. One can also argue that in their repetitiveness, these elements bear different meanings, according to the wider context of their occurrence, sort of a seasonal aspect of the biographical story.

Whichever way you look at it, there is so much to see and experience in Andrei Ujica's film, that you are guaranteed to not be left indifferent by it.


3 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 11 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series

Stream Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed