Based on the fictionalized biography of screenplay writer and lead actor Adrian Schiop, the film is set within the social borders of Bucharest's impoverished Roma ghetto of Ferentari, where Adi, a thirty-something anthropologist, moves to begin his field research into manele pop music. Getting a feel for the local scene and searching for a guide, he meets Alberto, a portly and jovial Roma with a prison record and gambling habit. The two strike up a friendship that unexpectedly blossoms into amorous companionship. When their relationship, hidden away from discriminating eyes, eventually starts to falter, the realities of the ethnic and cultural power dynamics operating in their society are laid bare.
Neither exploitative nor didactic, Soldiers. Story From Ferentari delivers a tender love story that discusses isolation, intimacy, and being at the mercy of a society too quick to ostracize.
Soldiers. Story From Ferentari is part of Traditional Loves @ Cinéma Galeries.
Directed by: Ivana Mladenovic