Interview with Călin Peter Netzer, the director and writer of Familiar, interviewer Edvinas Pukšta
"Netzer is undoubtedly an exciting director. A long string of prestigious awards got a cherry on top in 2013 with the win of Berlin International Film award’s main prize, the Golden Bear. Netzer’s “Child’s Pose” was the first Romanian film to receive the award.
Netzer’s films can be seen as a part of Romanian New Wave. An important theme in these films is Romania in the eighties under Nicolae Ceaușescu’s totalitarian regime and this is the theme explored in “Familiar”. Paranoid and obsessive Dragoş starts to piece together the life of his parents in the eighties, relying on archive materials and memories. He soon wallows in a mire of distorted reports from an old KGB-like surveillance department and family secrets dragged into light of day.
The film is partially based on the director’s experience of his family emigrating to Germany in 1983, when Netzer was a teenager. Netzer comments on the personal ties to the screenplay: „In the time of the pandemic, I didn’t have a project, I didn’t have anything to say. The only project I had was this one, which I thought I’ll make at the end of my career, when my parents are dead and I’m more distant from this.“
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