Romanian cinema, as demonstrated by the prestigious international awards assigned to some of its most famous exponents, is experiencing a particularly happy period. Cristian Mungiu, Radu Mihaileanu, Calin Peter Netzer and Cristi Puiu -to name just a few of the filmmakers who have been notably acclaimed by both critics and audience of festivals the world over- narrate the recent past and the present of their country, with a fierce and ruthless realism, with bleak and dark shades of colours, revealing the deep lacerations that run through a society that is painstakingly exiting from a dictatorship and facing the contradictions and clashes caused by a long economic crisis. Going through a generational turnover of creative freedom, from the hard years of Ceausescu’s regime to this day, Romanian cinema has forged a unique expressive identity. This Focus, dedicated to Romania, is going to investigate today’s freedom: a time when cinema is finally considered a quality film school with certain very recognisable elements; starting from the inescapable inquiry on human relationships. Films with screenplay, actors, tensions, but also sharp irony, where people are the ones at the center of everything. Therefore, we went to discover what new trends are being developed within it, and we selected the works of the youngest film-makers, in order to understand how influential the legacy of the cinematic realism of the previous generation is for them, to find which are the new themes that are recounted in these films and which technical and formal innovations are at the center of the most recent artistic research.
curated by Simone Bardoni and Alessandro Zucconi
Candy Crush, by Andrei Georgescu, 2015
Arta (Art), by Adrian Sitaru, 2014
Bucuresti-Berlin, by Anca Miruna Lazarescu, 2005
Prima Noapte (First Night), by Andrei Tanase, 2016
Ramona, by Andrei Cretulescu, 2015
A night in Tokoriki, by Roxana Stroe, 2016
Written/Unwritten, by Adrian Silisteanu, 2016
Farul (The Headlight), by Ionut Gaga, 2017
Eight different yet similar shorts, characterised by that peculiar humanism that has become the “hallmark” of Romanian cinema of the last few years. A cinema of fictional stories, sometimes very violent, outlined by the fil rouge of tense human relations, a string that links together many different works of Romanian directors.
PRIMA NOAPTE (FIRST NIGHT) is the intimate tale of a boy’s sexual initiation; disquieting, sometimes annoying, a notable emotional “slap”. As we pass to ARTA (ART), we face an unconventional reflection on ethics and on the director’s work; a charming, cold and unsettling challenge. CANDY CRUSH unveils how relationships sink, mined by doubts and ambiguous elements, and how rooms might absorb thoughts, silences and reflections. RAMONA, a happy return after Concorto’s first screening in 2015, is a passionate thriller with no morale nor rhetoric, a short that gets more and more intense at every screening. A NIGHT IN TOKORIKI brings us in a “different” Romania, from city suburbs to discos, where time stretches out creating a parallel dimension. WRITTEN/UNWRITTEN portraits shattered family relationships in a feast of discussions, dialogues and people, a “celebration” of Romanian cinema. BUCURESTI-BERLIN has the pace of a taxi ride, a way to escape suffocating family rooms. And finally, in FARUL (THE HEADLIGHT) a police report is alive as the dialogue between two characters unfolds.