The heart of a metropolis beats in its neighborhoods. Five communities reveal the other New York.
directed by Toma Peiu cinematography by Shan Jin, Toma Peiu, Luiza Pârvu editing and sound design by Luiza Pârvu produced by Toma Peiu & Luiza Pârvu
The civil society of the 21st century global city spend their everyday around neighborhood street corners, stores and public transit stops, outside the reach of mainstream media and show business. Rituals, routines and unexpected events woven into the fabric of the civilian experience reveal themselves to the attentive eye. Civilians is an exploration of life in the metropolis, framing everyday scenes in the streets of “the other New York”: a collection of communities whose specificity is challenged nowadays by advancing gentrification and changes in the city’s economic paradigm.
Two cooks prepare a tray of dim sum by a sidewalk window; mothers bid a long goodbye to their children, outside a parked school bus; a group of firefighters shop at a local supermarket; two elderly brothers sing in front of an audience for the first time; a father and son await the train home, the evening before Thanksgiving. In Civilians, a bricoleur looks at the public landscape and its inhabitants in melancholic “open window” frames unearthing the poetry hidden in the mundane of a contemporary American city, captured over one Thanksgiving week.
Produced by Root Films (Romania) and The New School University (USA)
Civilians (2017) Trailer
Short, experimental, documentary, 7 min, 2016
A visualization of Albert Camus’ The Myth of Sisyphus, through the lens of surveillance cameras around the world.
directed by Luiza Pârvu & Toma Peiu written by Toma Peiu adapted from The Myth of Sisyphus by Albert Camus editing & sound design by Luiza Pârvu narration by Brett Stiller
Video surveillance has penetrated virtually every space inhabited by humans. Tragedies, excitement, catastrophes, moments of bliss and the everyday life of the common man are nowadays documented on an unprecedented scale. Countless hours are recorded daily in an endless narrative of the spectacle of human existence. The content is usually available to private eyes, and the universal meaning obscured by the apparent disconnect between the various individuals, spaces and activities recorded.
Made entirely out of surveillance footage available online, Sisyphus 2.0 is meant to mirror existentialist philosopher Albert Camus’ text, originally published in 1942, in present day’s reality. It is a bookmark we are trying to place, in an attempt to capture the particular mark of a certain moment in the evolution of the post-industrial era, doing our best not to obscure the timeless, tireless and resilient nature of the manifestations of the human spirit.
Produced by Root Films (Romania) & NYU Tisch School of the Arts (USA)
Short, documentary, experimental, 4 min, 2016
Arabidopsis thaliana juxtaposes the implications of injury, development and regeneration for plants, humans and cities, with a nod to one of the most popular plant model organisms in biology and genetics.
written & directed by Toma Peiu & Nicholas DelRose narrated by Selima Smith-Dell cinematography by Toma Peiu & Luiza Pârvu microscope imagery & graphics by Nicholas DelRose editing & sound design by Luiza Pârvu location sound by Toma Peiu produced by Nicholas DelRose, Toma Peiu, Luiza Pârvu
Research of Dr. Kenneth Birnbaum’s Lab
A Root Films production, for the Symbiosis Film Competition - Imagine Science Film Festival
Arabidopsis thaliana (2016)
Start Anew World
Short, fiction, 23 min, 2014
A short narrative film telling a story from a forgotten generation of Romanian US immigrants.
Pennsylvania, 1908. Romanian immigrant cobbler Petru greets his cousin's wife Ana in their New World home, with silent affection. Before he wins her heart, however, he needs to break a piece of news that will change her for good.
directed by Luiza Pârvu written by Toma Peiu cinematography by Shan Jin production design by Lulu Petrescu, Adriana Răcășan, Erin Vassilopoulos edited by Luiza Pârvu, Tudor D. Popescu sound design by Laura Lăzărescu-Thois composer Grigore Leșe producers Toma Peiu, Luiza Pârvu, Adriana Răcășan, Andras Muhi, Gabor Ferenczy, Mihai Penișoară
Root Films (RO) / Focus Fox (HU) / Penproduction.ro (RO) / DaKino Productions (RO) / NYU Tisch (US)
Romania – Hungary – USA, 2014
O lume nouă | Start Anew World
Short, fiction, 14 min, 2014
Teenager Alma visits the abandoned house of her late grandparents, in search for an answer to a complicated question.
directed by Luiza Pârvu written by Luiza Pârvu, Toma Peiu cinematography by Eduard Pârvu location sound by Toma Peiu editing & sound design by Răzvan Ilinca production design by Luiza Pârvu, Toma Peiu executive producers Eduard Pârvu, Luiza Pârvu, Toma Peiu
Introducing Andreea Diaconița – Alma
Produced by UNATC “I.L. Caragiale” Bucharest
Short, fiction, 12 min, 2014
A homeless young woman accidentally breaks into a lone man's house, unwillingly becoming part of an unexpected personal quest with a twist, engineered by an unseen friend.
directed by Luiza Pârvu written by Toma Peiu, Luiza Pârvu cinematography by James K. Ferguson production design by Luiza Pârvu, Toma Peiu edited by Luiza Pârvu sound design by Luiza Pârvu executive producers Toma Peiu, Luiza Pârvu
Produced by Root Films (Romania) & NYU Tisch School of the Arts (USA)
Short, fiction, 19 min, 2013
Security guard Iulia, interior decorator Andi and English language teacher Ana are bound by a series of decisions that could change their lives forever. Each of them depends on the others' actions. Each one of them gets to care for and needs to be taken care of. Transparent windows are not necessarily see-through.
directed by Luiza Pârvu written by Toma Peiu cinematography by Andrei Goagă production design by Lulu Petrescu edited by Letiţia Ştefănescu sound design byLaura Lăzărescu composerFrancesco Agnello executive producerGabi Suciu
Produced by UNATC "I.L. Caragiale", Bucharest, Romania
My Baby (2013) Trailer
Short, fiction, 24 min, 2011
Two young actors, Olimpia and Edi, meet in an Irish Pub downtown Bucharest and start rehearsing for their next short film. Waiting for the director, who never shows up, they walk around the shooting locations. While discovering their characters and talking about how they would like the movie to end, they discover themselves and the complicated feelings that they experience.
written & directed by Luiza Pârvu co-written by Toma Peiu cinematography by Mihai Marius Apopei edited by Letitia Stefanescu
Adina tries to make a birthday for herself, but this is no easy task for a lonely bus ticket saleswoman, living alone in the old apartment of her late parents. She eventually finds an unusual way of spending the day, when she decides to call a professional party entertainer agency.
directed by Luiza Pârvu written by Luiza Pârvu, Toma Peiu cinematography by Andrei Goagă edited by Letiția Ștefănescu sound design by Tudor D. Popescu, Tudor Calnegru production design by Ana Cântabine trailer theme song by Mihai Dobre, Alex Pop