16th edition of the Romanian Film Festival at Curzon Soho

21 - 25/10/2021 @ Curzon SOHO

21- 25 October 2021, Curzon Soho 


We are delighted to present the 16th edition of the Romanian Film Festival at Curzon Soho. The programme comprises a broad spectrum of features and shorts that reflect the multiplicity of the country's national cinema. The festival kicks off with this year's Berlin Golden Bear winner Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn, a cheeky comedy that mocks prudishness through its sympathetic portrayal of a school teacher whose reputation is called into question when her sex tape is leaked online.   

Radu Jude, one of the most unique directors working out of Eastern Europe today, features with not just one, but two of his award-winning latest films: Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn (2021) and Uppercase Print (2020).

Our RFF 2021 title - THE SEASON OF CONTENTION - encapsulates the many-layered themes of the festival. This is the season that signals the re-emergence of issues and events, which, for decades, have been obscured and exiled from public discourse. Now these stories become part of the experience motivating present day artistes to mount campaigns of contentious argument about their understanding of state responsibility and freedom.

For the past 16 years RFF has brought films in Romanian. Now, as a token of solidarity, we include films in Serbian (Ivana the Terrible), Hungarian (Tall Tales) and Slovak (Servants). These are powerful international co-productions about common history, family roots, friendship and trust. As usual, all films have English subtitles.

We’re also privileged to include remarkable women directors in RFF 2021 with stories about love, grief, trauma and family life. Sarra Tsorakidis brings Kaimos/Sorrow, Maria Popistașu co-directs The Seagull together with Alexandru Baciu, and Ivana Mladenović closes the festival with Ivana the Terrible. Powerful, thoughtful work. Fine humour, delving deeply into our experiences and emotions.

In addition to the long feature films, we bring you The Romanian Shortcut - a carefully selected program of short features. On Sunday 24 Oct matinee.

Join us in Curzon Soho next week and enjoy the films and conversations with outstanding Romanian talent: lead Katia Pascariu (Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn), playwright Gianina Cărbunariu (Uppercase Print), lead Vlad Ivanov (Servants), lead Levente Molnár (Tall Tales) and producer Ada Solomon (Ivana the Terrible).

Special thanks go to our generous friends - sponsors and supporters, to our tiny but fabulous festival team. And especially to you, film lovers!

Film season is starting next week! Are you ready, film lovers?
Book your seats NOW.

RFF 2021 Opening Night
Thursday 21 October 2021, 6.00pm
Followed by virtual Q&A with lead actor Katia Pascariu

Drama, Comedy / 2021 / 106 min / in Romanian, with English subtitles
Note: Advised 18. It contains strong real sex, nudity, very strong language.
Co-production: Romania, Luxembourg, Czech Republic and Croatia
Golden Bear winner at Berlinale 2021
Released in UK cinemas nationwide on November 26, by Sovereign Film Distribution.
Tickets: https://www.curzon.com/films/rff-2021-bad-luck-banging-or-loony-porn/HO00003661/
Emi, a school teacher, finds her career and reputation under threat after a personal sex tape is leaked on the Internet. Forced to meet the parents demanding her dismissal, Emi refuses to surrender to their pressure.
"A political allegory, a social satire, a feminist fable, and a state-of-the-affairs postcard from the forefront of the collective consciousness of the early 21st century warped by misogyny, tyranny, conservative agenda, and hypocrisy."  (Screen Anarchy)

Friday 22 October 2021, 6.00pm
UPPERCASE PRINT (dir. Radu Jude)
Followed by virtual Q&A with playwright Gianina Cărbunariu

Film trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tW8X-JfwyOQ&t=6s
Drama / 2020 / 128 min / Romania / in Romanian, with English subtitles
Based on the play ‘Tipografic Majuscul’ by Gianina Cărbunariu.
Inspired by true events.
Tickets: https://www.curzon.com/films/rff-2021-uppercase-print/HO00003662/
Romania, 1981. Ceausescu is in office, leading a communist Romania. He writes the official story with the help of the National Television. Mugur Călinescu, a 16 y.o. teenager, writes another story on walls with chalked uppercase protest messages against the regime. His actions are compiled in a voluminous file kept by the Secret Police (Securitate), which observed, apprehended and interrogated him. Linking both stories - secret and public - personal and collective - brings to light an unknown hero 30 years after the fall of communism.
“Radu Jude delivers historical reckoning by way of exhaustive Brechtian investigation into one story of state oppression under Ceausescu” (Variety)

Saturday 23 October 2021, 6.00pm
SERVANTS (dir. Ivan Ostrochovský)
Followed by in-person Q&A with lead actor Vlad Ivanov

Film trailer: https://vimeo.com/531725794
Drama / 2020 / 81 minutes / in Slovak, with English subtitles
Co-production: Slovakia, Romania, Czech Republic, Ireland
Tickets: https://www.curzon.com/films/rff-2021-servants/HO00003663/
International crew includes actor Vlad Ivanov, composer Cristian Lolea, co-producers Oana Bujgoi Giurgiu and Tudor Giurgiu from Romania.
Beautifully shot black-and-white drama set in 80s Czechoslovakia. Young seminary students, grappling with Communist party control of the Catholic, must decide whether they will collaborate with the regime or subject themselves to draconian surveillance by the secret police.
“Almost monolithically representing the Communist powers oppressing the seminary is Doctor Ivan (Vlad Ivanov, best known as the doctor in 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days, 2007), who fondles his stethoscope as he enacts state violence and wears a smirk that implies perverse pleasure.” (Thomas Flew, Sight & Sound BFI)
"Amazing visual compositions... There is a chill of political fear." - The Guardian
"Brilliantly crafted, atmospherically enveloping... arresting" – Variety

Sunday 24 October 2021, 3.00pm
Introduced by lead actor Vlad Ivanov

31 HOURS (dir. Claudiu Mitcu)
THE SEAGULL (dir. Maria Popistașu & Alexandru Baciu)
KAÏMOS (dir. Sarra Tsorakidis)
Tickets: https://www.curzon.com/films/rff-2021-romanian-shortcut/HO00003664/

31 HOURS (dir. Claudiu Mitcu)
Short / Drama / 2021 / 20 min / Romania / in Romanian, with English subtitles
Starring: Alexandru Potocean, Vlad Ivanov, Ioana Flora, Mihai Calotă, Dana Rogoz, Ilinca Sava, Marc Anger, Florentina Năstase
Stefan is an overworked surgeon, who has just come out of a 31-hour shift. There is a last minute case and he is the only surgeon available and enters for one last operation before leaving home. Things do not go as planned.

THE SEAGULL (dir. Maria Popistașu & Alexandru Baciu)
Short / Drama / 2018 / 16 min / Romania / in Romanian, with English subtitles
Starring: Maria Popistașu, Alexandru Dabija, Paul Chirana
While temporarily hosting her ailing father, Laura finds an injured seagull in the backyard. Their newfound goal to salvage the bird is the perfect excuse to avoid talking about the real issue, the imminence of death.

KAÏMOS / SORROW (dir. Sarra Tsorakidis)
Trailer: https://vimeo.com/449265644
Short / Drama / 2020 / 28 min / Romania / in Romanian, with English subtitles
Starring: Maria Popistașu, Adrian Ciglenean, Victoria Cociaș, Toto Dumitrescu
After many years of living abroad, Eli comes home...
The family reunion brings out old misunderstandings and unresolved differences.

Trailer: https://m.imdb.com/video/vi3367092249
Short documentary / 2020 / 27 min / Romania / in Romanian with English subtitles
“During the 2020 lockdown, my grandmother passed away. She was 90. Looking through personal archives I found an audio recording with her and a few photo albums. This film, composed entirely of photographs, presents a part of her life story, reflected in the context of the socio-political events that Romania went through in the XX-th century.” (Vlad Petri)

Sunday 24 October 2021, 5.15pm
TALL TALES (dir. Attila Szász)
Followed by in-person Q&A with lead actor Levente Molnár

Trailer: https://www.imdb.com/video/vi4188913433
Drama, Romance, Thriller / 2019 / 112 min / Hungary / in Hungarian, with English subtitles
Tickets: https://www.curzon.com/films/rff-2021-tall-tales/HO00003665/
International crew includes Levente Molnár (Son of Saul, Sunset), Romanian-Hungarian actor based in London.
1945, Hungary. Shortly after the end of World War II, when chaos and insecurity reign supreme in the country, a con man tries to take advantage of such confused times. Forced to flee Budapest, he's given shelter in the woods by a mysterious woman. He soon finds himself in a passionate love affair that may well cost him his life.

RFF 2021 Closing Night
Monday 25 October 2021, 6.20pm
IVANA THE TERRIBLE (dir. Ivana Mladenović)
Followed by virtual Q&A with producer Ada Solomon

Trailer: https://syndicadofs.com/ivana-the-terrible/
Drama, Comedy / 2019 / 89 min / in Romanian and Serbian, with English subtitles
Co-production: Romania, Serbia
Awarded Filmmakers of the Present Ciné+ Special Jury Prize at Locarno Film Festival
Tickets: https://www.curzon.com/films/rff-2021-ivana-the-terrible/HO00003666/
On the Danube border, drama becomes a comedy. Ivana invites friends, family and former lovers to play themselves & their emotions in a scripted version of the story of a woman on the verge of a nervous breakdown. At times it gets extremely personal, with quite a few absurd and laugh-out-loud moments.

Organised by Profusion International (www.profusion.org.uk)
In partnership with Curzon Cinemas (www.curzoncinemas.com)

Sponsored by:
Prodan Romanian Cultural Foundation (https://romanianculture.org/),
Traduceri autorizate/Authorised Translations (www.translationromanian.co.uk)
Art in Conversation (http://www.artinconversation.co.uk/)
Remus Robu Solicitors (https://remusrobusolicitors.co.uk/

Supported by ICR London (http://www.icr-london.co.uk/)

RFF is a not-for-profit enterprise, functioning with the help of grants and sponsorship from friends and supporters.
All films have English subtitles.
Screenings take place at Curzon Soho, 99 Shaftesbury Avenue, London W1D 5DY.
Nearest tube: Leicester Square; Piccadilly Circus.

Twitter @RomanianFilmLDN
Insta @rofilmfest