Contemporary World Cinema

Ana, mon amour

Calin Peter Netzer

Ana mon amour 01

Romanian filmmaker Calin Peter Netzer (Child’s Pose) won the Silver Bear at the Berlin Film Festival for this captivating study of a passionate romance that is threatened by both the spectre of mental illness, and the sufferer’s subsequent journey from dependence to self-reliance.

Following up his 2013 Golden Bear winner Child's Pose with this Silver Bear–winning entry (for outstanding artistic contribution), Calin Peter Netzer's latest, Ana, mon amour, delivers a deep analysis of relationships and the ties that bind… and the things that break them apart.

Told in non-chronological fashion, Ana, mon amour traces the rise and fall of the tumultuous and passionate romance of Toma (Mircea Postelnicu) and Ana (Diana Cavallioti). We first meet the couple as university students in love's thrall. It is along Toma and Ana's physical and emotional bond that Netzer weaves his film's narrative threads. At the first sign of Ana's debilitating anxiety attacks, Toma's protective instincts kick in and he safeguards her (and their relationship) from external threats. Later, however, the power dynamic shifts. Ana begins a transformative journey of self-reliance, leaving Toma behind, alone and unable to piece together the fragments of their decade-long relationship.

Netzer's stylistic and dramatic virtuosity delivers a captivating character study of mental illness and the fraught psychology of relationships in this adaptation of Cezar Paul Badescu's Luminita, mon amour.

Engrossing performances from Postelnicu and Cavallioti, meanwhile, pull us into the epicentre of Netzer's riveting story. We emerge from the narrative labyrinth of Toma and Ana's fractured relationship reminded of our individual fragility and the power that love has on our lives.

DIMITRI EIPIDES

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