“Soldatii. Poveste din Ferentari” (“Soldiers. Story from Ferentari”), the feature debut of the film director Ivana Mladenovic, was selected in the Bright Feature competition of the Rotterdam International Film Festival which will be held between January 24 and February 4.
The movie is a Romanian and Serbian co-production and will compete against 47 films from other countries like the United States of America, Germany, Sweden or France, for the 10,000-euro prize of the section dedicated to the young filmmakers.
The feature, which is a free adaptation of the novel with the same name written by Adrian Schiop and published by Polirom Publishing House in 2013, will be released in the Romanian cinemas next month, on February 2.
The movie – the world premiere of which took place in 2017 at the “Discovery” section of the Toronto International Film Festival, and whose European premiere was at the official competition of the San Sebastián Festival where it was rewarded with the Premios Sebastiane special mention of the jury – tells the story of Adi, a 40 years old anthropologist who was recently left by his girlfriend and who moves to Ferentari to document a doctorate in “manele”. He meets Alberto there, a poor Roma man, a former convict who promises to help him meet singers. They start a relationship pretty soon. When the money is over, both of them realize they are trapped into an apartment where they honestly love and use each other .
The film was also selected in competitions of Filmfest Hanburg, Central and Eastern European Film Festival Luxemburg (CinEast), Reykjavik International Film Festival and CPH PIX. In October 2017, it was rewarded with Prix Découverte at the 32nd edition of the Namur International Francophone Film Festival.
Specialized international press considered it a debut “in force”, “an excellent moment of the Romanian film industry”. El Mundo newspaper titled that “Soldiers. Story from Ferentari” is honest and bold. “The tough part that is visible doesn’t matter so much, but the delicacy that can be intuited. Mladenovic’s camera builds a universe here. It’s a dirty world, which leaves traces, as you can guess. Ineffaceable traces”.
The script is signed by Ivana Mladenovic and Adrian Schiop, the cinematography – by Luchian Ciobanu, the film editing was made by Catalin Cristutiu, costume design – by Maria Pitea, Adrian Cristea was in charge with the production design, while the makeup was made by Maria Andreescu. The producers are Ada Solomon, Jelena Mitrovic (Serbia), Cassandre Warnauts and Jean Yves Roubin (Belgium).
“Soldiers. Story from Ferentari” is a production of Hi Film Productions (Romania) in co-production with Film House Bas Celik (Serbia) and Farkas Productions (Belgia), with the support of the National Center of Cinematography, Film Center Serbia, Serbian Culture and Information Ministry, Tax Shelter of Belgian Federal Government, Kafka Pictures House through Belfius and Eurimages. It was funded by Proximus Belgia and Living Pictures Serbia and developed within Transilvania Pitch Stop, Cinelink Sarajevo, with the support of Mobra Film.
“Soldiers. Story from Ferentari” is distributed internationally by Beta Cinema, while in Romania it is distributed by microFILM.
Official trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WuMW679lnNE&t=2s
Photo credit: Hi Film Productions