RoFest.Trends film festival is not just a project, it is a story about Romania and Eastern Europe.
It’s a story about ordinary Romanians and the challenges they need to constantly overcome.
It’s a story about different shades of grey, never about Black and White, or Good and Evil.
It’s a story about everyday heroes and their existential dilemmas on love, traditions and politics, faith and ignorance, unwritten social rules and the pervasive need to escape those rules.
In a nutshel, our festival calls for Romanian feature and short movies telling East-side stories.
The ROFest.Trends Film Festival is scheduled to take place between the 20th and the 22nd of April 2018, at AMC River East 21 in Chicago.
- Friday, April 20:
6:30–9:00 p.m.: opening feature fiction screening 6,9 on the Richter Scale, by Nae Caranfil
9:30–11:00 p.m: private reception – by invitation, only
- Saturday, April 21:
1:00-4:00 p.m: screening Aferim! by Radu Jude & workshop “The film as a socio-cultural radiography of Romania”; special guest Mihaela Sirbu (with the support of SNSPA)
5:00-7:00 p.m.: screening Dogs, by Bogdan Mirica, & Q&A with Bogdan Mirica
7:30-9:30 p.m.: screening Eastern Business, by Igor Cobileanski & Q&A with Constantin Puscasu
- Sunday, April 22:
1:00-4:00 p.m: screening The Fixer, by Adrian Sitaru & debate “Ethics in Journalism. Fake News, Fake Stories” (with the support of SNSPA)
5:00-7:00 p.m.: screening Two Lottery Tickets by Paul Negoescu and Q&A with Alexandru Papadopol
7:00-8:00 p.m.: screening The King who Tricked Hitler by Trevor Poots
9:00-10:00 p.m.: private reception – by invitation, only
6.9 ON RICHTER SCALE, by Nae Caranfil
A humble Romanian actor in his 40’s, hardly surviving between a complicated part in a musical, a depressed and pathologically jealous wife, and the obsession of an imminent, devastating earthquake, becomes the willing victim of his manipulative father who appears in his life for the very first time. But in the end, what seems like a visit to hell turns into a path of redemption as Tony’s journey evolves. His leading role in Orpheus in the Underworld perfectly mirrors his chaotic life on the verge of collapsing. The parallel, musical world turns his apocalyptic thoughts into an explosion of sheer vitality.
Fri, Apr 20 6:30 PM
AFERIM! BY RADU JUDE
Eastern Europe, 1835. Two riders cross a barren landscape in the middle of Wallachia. They are the gendarme Costandin and his son. Together they are searching for a gypsy slave who has run away from his nobleman master and is suspected of having an affair with the noble’s wife. While the unflappable Costandin comments on every situation with a cheery aphorism, his son takes a more contemplative view of the world. On their odyssey they encounter people of different nationalities and beliefs: Turks and Russians, Christians and Jews, Romanians and Hungarians.
Sat, Apr 21 1:00 PM
DOGS BY BOGDAN MIRICA
By attending the screening of “Dogs”, you will be able to participate in the Q&A session with the director, Bogdan Mirica.
Roman returns to the land near the border with Ukraine he has just inherited from his grandfather. Fully decided to sell this vast but desolate property, he is warned by the local cop that his grandfather was a local crime lord and his men will not let go of the land – and their smuggling business – without a fight.
Sat, Apr 21 5:00 PM
EASTERN BUSINESS, BY IGOR COBILEANSKI
Confronted with poverty and lack of perspective, Marian, the intellectual choir singer, and Petro, the sneak thief loser, form an unlikely friendship in jail, after a silly fight. They decide to become business partners and work on a plan to make money and reach their dreams: Marian – to finally marry his fiancée, and Petro – to buy a crane and earn from its rental. They manage to close a deal with three Caucasian gangsters and buy a wagon full of horseshoes, but they soon get robbed and everything seems to be turning to dust. Even if they are constantly followed by bad luck, the two men don’t lose their optimism and always try different things to earn their money. Eastern Business is a dark comedy about how absurd and sarcastic sometimes life proves to be.
Sat, Apr 21 7:30 PM
MUZEON & CLAY WATCHING
MUZEON, by Laurentiu Damian- By portraying the post-modern artist Stefan Râmniceanu and the muzeum curated by him, the film is a double invitation: inside the artist’s baroque island full of forms, colours and chimeras, but also towards the pulsations of Nature as seen through the eyes of the artist, in which the spectator might discover his own possible island, a the space of assumed exile. CLAY WATCHING, by Hadrian Gavrilutiu- The village of Piscu, 38 km from Bucharest, is a well-known village of potters. The documentary focuses on Dumitru Constantin (Nea Mitica), one of the last three clay-processing craftsmen of the village, who reveals the secrets of this craft on the verge of extinction.
Sun, Apr 22 10:00 AM
THE FIXER, BY ADRIAN SITARU
By attending the screening of “The Fixer”, you are able to participate in the Q&A session and debate entitled “Ethics in Journalism. Fake news, fake stories” organized by the National Unitersity of Political Studies and Public Administration, Bucharest.
Serving as a translator and general problem solver, or “fixer,” a Romanian reporter working at a French news network seizes a career-making opportunity when a sex scandal breaks and two underage Romanian prostitutes are repatriated from France. He’s willing to do whatever it takes to interview one of them – up to the point where he must ask himself if, as a journalist, he can live with the consequences, and if, as a father, he’s setting a good example for his son.
Sun, Apr 22 1:00 PM
THE KING WHO TRICKED HITLER
This is one of the last and greatest untold stories of the Second World War, revealed by King Michael I of Romania. “We took the train to Berlin to see the other side of the coin and we had lunch with Hitler. It wasn’t an enjoyable meeting.” It is the story of a King’s decision who, in a critical moment of the Second World War, relinquished Germany’s support, guiding Romania towards the Allies, thus bringing about a quicker end to the war. It is a story of palatial intrigues. And a story of deceptions. From Buckingham Palace to Bucharest. From Moscow to Washington. Lost diplomatic signals, aristocrat spies and blackmail at gun point. And the courage of a young king who dared.
Sun, Apr 22 8:00 PM
TWO LOTTERY TICKETS
By attending the screening of “TWO LOTTERY TICKETS”, you will be able to participate in the Q&A session with the main cast – Alexandru Papadopol.
Dinel, Sile and Pompiliu, three men from a provincial town of Romania, win the big lottery prize. But very soon the lottery ticket gets stolen, so the three characters start a journey to recover it. Inspired by the well-known short story of Romanian playwriter Ion Luca Caragiale, the film is a timeless situation comedy.
Sun, Apr 22 5:00 PM
WRITTEN/UNWRITTEN & SHINDY MUSIC
WRITTEN/UNWRITTEN – Outside a maternity ward, a Roma family is announced their underage daughter has just had a baby girl. Things become tenser when a hospital employee discovers issues related to their IDs. The imminent danger of state authorities separating them from their daughter determines Pardica to take action. SHINDY MUSIC – Vaslui, Neamt and Botosani. Three eastern Romanians counties. Three different childhoods united by the same goal: becoming a famous musician. Giani, Sebi and Raul are three children growing up in different parts of Romania, learning traditional shindy music. The film is following their day-to-day life, their family stories, their struggles and their dreams.
Sat, Apr 21 10:00 AM