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Scarred Hearts

  • Directed by Radu Jude
  • Romania/Germany/Belgium/France, 2016, 141 mins., Romanian

Based loosely on the writings of the Romanian dissident Max Blecher (1909-1938), Scarred Hearts follows the young Emmanuel (Lucian Teodor Rus), a Jewish intellectual suffering from bone tuberculosis who in 1937 checks into a seaside sanitarium for treatment. Finding a cadre of young, smart Jews like himself there, Emmanuel quickly settles in socially, but physically undergoes a torturous series of speculative treatments that increasingly sap his strength. A burgeoning—and fumbling—relationship fellow patient Solange (Ivana Mladenovic) and friendships with others suffering from obscure ailments keep Emmanuel engaged; meanwhile, the steady rise of fascism in Europe rages outside the sanitarium’s walls, news and ideologies trickling into it sterile rooms and corridors. Directed by rising star Radu Jude (Aferim!) and shot on glorious 35mm in the boxy Academy aspect ratio, Scarred Hearts is “the rare page-to-screen adaptation in which the camera becomes an essential character.”—Ben Kenigsberg, The New York Times. “Fanatically detailed, intellectually furious.”—Richard Brody, The New Yorker.

Genres: Historical, Comedy, Drama

Other Films by Radu Jude


Jude won Best Director at the Berlin Film Festival for this visionary historical epic — a European “Eastern” to an American Western. In the principality of Wallachia, life is more Dark Ages than Age of Enlightenment, even in 1835. Constable Costandin and his son have been dispatched by a nobleman to track down a runaway