Director: Horațiu Mălăele, 2020, subtitles, 104 minutes
Followed by a Q&A with director Horațiu Mălăele and actor Bogdan Mălăele
New York City. After having witnessed a reckoning between mobsters, Matthew Rodriguez, taxi driver and amateur actor, is enrolled by the FBI in a witness protection program. But Matthew Rodriguez is in fact Luca Plătici, the son of a hard-boiled Romania communist, who had managed to flee the country just a few months before the revolution. Returning home after more than 20 years, Luca is assigned to a safe house where he is forbidden to interact with anyone from his former life. However, things get complicated when he meets Giulia, a former prostitute who is now under the protection of the authorities as well, and Nedelcu, the officer who had tortured him in the past for border trespassing, now his supervisor. While Nedelcu’s abuses of the protected witnesses are blatantly ramping up, Luca comes up with a plan to save Giulia and protect himself. But in order to do so he needs to ask for help from a former fellow student, now a small-time actor, and to resume contact with his mother, with whom he had cut all ties before fleeing abroad. The film showcases Luca’s perspective and his histrionic nature fusing reality with fiction, thus making the actor often get lost in his characters.
One of the largest events of its kind in North America, The Romanian Film Festival of Washington, D.C. (RFF) kicks off at The Miracle Theatre on June 3rd, 2022 under the motto: “Reinventing Realism — New Cinema from Romania”. Bigger and bolder than the previous two editions, RFF 2022 showcases the creative diversity of a cinema that has become a force on the international arthouse circuit.
Curated by Romanian film critic Mihai Fulger, the program, running for three consecutive weekends, features 12 of the most original and thought-provoking productions of the pandemic years which take the viewer through a veritable deep-dive into the Eastern European psyche, offering a better understanding of current dynamics dramatically unfolding in the Old World. No less than 13 Romanian directors, actors, producers and film critics will cross the Atlantic to introduce their films and meet with the American cinephiles.
Dedicated to the 25th anniversary since the launch of the Strategic Partnership for the 21st Century between Romania and the United States of America, RFF 2022 is organized by the Embassy of Romania to the United States, Romanian Cultural Institute in New York, The Miracle Theatre in Washington, DC and with the generous support of the Transylvania Bank (Banca Transilvania) from Romania.
For the complete list of films, visit: romanianfilmfestivaldc.com