Acasa, My Home
Director: Radu Ciorniciuc | 86 min | 2020 | Romania, Germany, Finland
For 20 years, the Enache family, nine children and their parents, have lived in the wilderness of the Bucharest Delta. On the other side of the river sits the Romanian capital Bucharest, where plans to turn the Bucharest Delta into a national park have been brewing for as long as the Enaches have lived there.
When those plans come to fruition, Europe’s biggest urban delta will become the Văcăreşti Nature Park. The Enaches face eviction and integration into a society which proud patriarch Gică has long rejected.
With their roots in the wilderness, the family struggles to find a way to remain a self-supporting unit in the concrete jungle to which they're relocated. For the children, fishing rods are replaced by smartphones and previously idle afternoons are now spent in classrooms, learning to read and write.
This is a David and Goliath tale where David doesn't win.
Thematically, 'Acasă, My Home' bears comparison thematically and aesthetically with last year's Doc Edge title 'Honeyland'. Both are beautifully shot, with strong underlying messages about the nature of 'progress' and 'development'.
Filmmaker Radu Ciorniciuc takes an observational approach, which boosts the contribution of the cinematography to the storytelling. Director Radu and cinematographer Mircea Topoleanu shot the film, which won a Special Jury Award for Cinematography at Sundance.
Described by 'The Hollywood Reporter's' Sheri Linden as "vividly specific and universally resonant”, and by Cineuropa's Ştefan Dobroiu as "heart-breaking and relevant", 'Acasă' is a compelling tale of a family fighting for acceptance and their own version of freedom.
Opposing them is a system which accepts only those who are already integrated, and traps and trips up those who are not with incomprehensible rules and seemingly unnatural expectations. In that respect, 'Acasă' explores territory also covered by another Doc Edge 2020 title, Seung-Jun Yi 's 'Shadow Flower'.
Previous festival selections include:
Sundance: winner, World Cinema Documentary Special Jury Award for Cinematography