Director: Adrian Sitaru Writers: Adrian Silsteanu, Claudia Silisteanu
Cast: Sorin Cocis, Tudor Istodor, Mehdi Nebbou, Diana Spatarescu, Adrian Titeni
110min | Drama | Romania
Romanian New Wave drama The Fixer asks a simple question: how far are we prepared to go to get ahead in our increasingly competitive world? A young Romanian father and hungry trainee journalist at a French network uses a topical sex scandal as an opportunity to make his mark in Adrian Sitaru’s sombre and intense fifth feature, whose non-judgemental stance leaves us to find our own way in the moral maze.
The translator and general ‘fixer’ Radu Patru (Tudor Istodor) pricks up his ears when a breaking news story involving two underage Romanian prostitutes creates an international scandal. Doing his best to get an interview with the girl involved, without compromising his own moral scruples, Radu soon realises that there is a thin line between professional journalism and dishing the dirt.
Themes of fatherhood, misogyny, and the class divisions of contemporary Europe percolate through Claudia Silisteanu’s clever script but sadly none of the performances really stand out, making it difficult to engage or empathise with any of the characters, although Tudor Istodor is probably gives the most appealing turn. Shooting in Bucharest and Transylvania, co-writer Adrian Silisteanu dark and desaturated hand-held photographs do their best to capture the dark days of Communism linking the contemporary world with the past in an intriguing but sometimes intractable piece of filmmaking that requires intense concentration to follow the storyline. MT
TORONTO FILM FESTIVAL UNTIL 18 SEPTEMBER 2016