Art Takes You Prisoner: Radu Jude on Do Not Expect Too Much from the End of the World

Talking about new media, the TikTok avatar Bobiță was created by Ilinca Manolache before you cast her as Angela in the film. And so you have multiple layers of social criticism through your lens through her lens, through his quote-unquote lens, through the lens of the TikTok filter. Can you talk a bit about all those different lenses and how they kind of refract each other, even though they’re layered on top of each other? 

The filter is the new Méliès, I think. Did you see Trump using them? 

Yeah. I think filters, in general, are a way to mask but unmask at the same, right? You get to hide yourself, but you get to say what you really feel. I love that tension.

Yeah, me too. I think it is fascinating. But everything that happens around images today is fascinating. I mean, it’s fascinating in both ways. It can be shocking, and you can be scared about the processes that can change you, our jobs and cinema forever. But at the same time, I think I am really happy to be living in such a time, you know, where things are so exploding somehow. 

I wanted, in the film, to have a little bit of rumination about cinema, cameras, along these lines, and also to offer them for analysis and for interpretation. And, I don’t know if I succeeded. I can just speak about my intentions to make viewers aware of what the image is. The problem with images is that they are so easy to grasp, apparently. You see a photo, let’s say, and in a second, you don’t need anything more to understand it in such a brief moment. You have a film and everybody, when they see a film, they really have no reservations to offer their opinions, you know? While for other things, like contemporary music or contemporary painting, people will sometimes have more reservations.

I think this is not only because cinema is popular, which I think is great. But also because the images seem so easy to grasp. But actually, they are not that easy at all, if you start thinking about them — when you try to understand them from a philosophical point of view, from a historical point of view, from an ethical point of view, from sociological point of view, they are extremely diffic

ult to grasp. Nowadays, actually, I honestly don’t know how to understand the images around me in a certain way because the relationships they have, or they used to have with reality, doesn’t exist.


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