Chuck Norris vs. Communism

Synopsis: In 1980s Romania, thousands of Western films smashed through the Iron Curtain opening a window into the free world for those who dared to look. A black market VHS racketeer and a courageous female translator brought the magic of film to the masses and sowed the seeds of a revolution.
Rotten Tomatoes:
78 min

I was young,

about seven or eight years old.

And someone said,

Lets go to a video night!

It was thrilling.

The whole context was thrilling.

Watching foreign films for the first time,

almost illegal,

because they werent allowed.

At least I felt that we were

watching things we shouldnt see.

Mom wouldnt let me watch that film.

It was considered...

-Too erotic?


Why is he doing that to her skirt?

Whats that? Look at her.

Once Upon a Time in America

with Robert De Niro.

Pretty Woman.

The Protector.

Nine and a Half Weeks.

Goose, Goose Im on your tail.

Top Gun, wait a minute, Top Gun!

Speaking of serious, dramatic films,

I saw Top Gun 38 times.

I remember the first film I saw.

It was Last Tango in Paris

with Marlon Brando.

It was like being hit over the head!

I couldnt imagine

a film like that could exist.

I felt like I was struck by lightning!

And what a film to start with!

Thats when I realized

how far behind the West we were.

In Romania,

capitalism has lived its last day.

The people are the true masters

and will remain masters of their destiny

and the riches of the country.

Television went from 20 hours

of broadcasting on two channels

to one two-hour broadcast per day.

Comrade Nicolae Ceausescus report,

a theoretical and practical contribution

meant to vigorously drive

economic and social life,

is the focus for the whole country.

To cut informative TV broadcasts

and to keep a population

of 20 million people,

to keep a whole country

in ignorance for years

is an act with very serious

long term consequences.

There was a crisis of films

in the cinema market,

but at the same time, the audience

had a huge appetite for films.

Then VHS films appeared,

video as we called it.

It felt amazing to do something illegal

during Communism,

something not communist.

Watching imperialist movies.

They were all dubbed by the same voice.

Films in English were

usually dubbed by Irina Nistor.

The whole country knew her voice,

but no one knew what she looked like.

Kiss me.

But youre sticky.

So what?

Its the most well known voice

in Romania after Ceausescus.

When I say, yes?



I really wanted to know

what she looked like.

I didnt even think she had a body.

She was pure consciousness

She was the voice.

You work on commission, right?


Big mistake!


She was an entity.

I imagined her dubbing films

in her kitchen, making soup or...

Yeah, you could hear noises.

A brunette with long hair

and really strong.

I always had a feeling she was blonde.

Very beautiful.

She has this warm voice, a soft tone.

Thats how I saw her...

A feline, a model.

Thats how I imagined Irina Nistor.

Incredibly beautiful.


Like a voice from a choir of angels.

In the 80s, I worked as a film translator

for Romanian State Television.

I didnt fit in there.

I didnt like it. I often had to translate

for the Ideological Commission.

It was a censorship committee that decided

what to broadcast and what to cut.

New Jersey, three months earlier.

Mom, I dont want to go to school.

Mrs. Wardrobe is impossible.

-I dont want to discuss this.

-No, cut this.

Mom, well be late.


Too much food.

Products, look, look!

Whats the message?

That the West is a land of prosperity?

I dont think so.

-So were cutting this?

-Of course we are.

Mac, what are you doing?

To start with, I managed to find a TV.

I paid 20,000 LEI for this color TV.

It was a Sharp TV made in Japan.

The second step

was getting a video player.

A video player cost as much

as a Dacia car.

It was the equivalent of a new Dacia.

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    "Chuck Norris vs. Communism" STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 28 Sep. 2023. <>.

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