Sieranevada and the unstoppable Cristi Puiu

Film still of Sieranevada © RR

Un Certain Regard winner in 2005 with The Death of Mr Lazarescu (Moartea domnului Lăzărescu) and appearing again in the Un Certain Regard line-up in 2005 with Aurora, Cristi Puiu is In Competition for the first time with Sieranevada. This family drama set in Bucharest is reminiscent of the director's previous works in tone and confirms that Romanian cinema is very much alive.

Returning from a business trip to Paris, Lary goes to a family meal held in memory of his dead father. The event takes an unexpected turn, forcing Lary to question his place in the family.

A closer look at Cristi Puiu's filmography reveals fewer films made than awards won over the course of his career. He cut his cinema teeth in 1995 with Before Breakfast, a short film chosen for the Locarno Film Festival. In 2001, his first feature-length film – Stuff and Dough (Marfa si banii) – was chosen for the Directors' Fortnight and won several prizes, including the Procirep Award at the Angers European First Film Festival and the Abasto Award at the Buenos Aires International Festival of Independent Cinema. In 2004, he returned to the short film genre with Cigarettes and Coffee (Un cartuş de Kent şi un pachet de cafea), which won him a Golden Bear at the Berlinale. His reputation was sealed with The Death of Mr Lazarescu (Moartea domnului Lăzărescu), awarded the Un Certain Regard Prize at Cannes in 2005. With Sieranevada, Cristi Puiu gives us a third instalment of his projet on the Bucharest suburbs and puts himself in the running for the Palme d'or.

Since Cristian Mungiu's 4 months, 3 weeks and 2 days (4 luni, 3 saptamâni si 2 zile), which won the Palme d'or in 2007, placed Romanian film at the centre of the international stage, its dynamism has been constantly in evidence. This year at Cannes is no exception. Alongside Cristi Puiu, Bacalaureat (Graduation) by Cristian Mungiu is In Competition and Bogdan Mirica's Câini (Dogs) numbers among the Un Certain Regard official selection. 

Porté sur le devant de la scène internationale par la Palme d’or de Cristian Mungiu en 2007 avec 4 mois, 3 semaines, 2 jours, le cinéma roumain n’a cessé de confirmer son dynamisme. C’est encore le cas cette année à Cannes, où sont accueillis aux côtés de Cristi Puiu, Bacalaureat de Cristian Mungiu, en compétition, et Câini de Bogdan Mirica, à Un Certain Regard.