Niki and Flo
(Niki Ardelean, colonel în rezervă)
Răzvan Vasilescu, Victor Rebengiuc, Coca Bloos, Șerban Pavlu,
Politics, pride, and parenthood collide in Lucian Pintilie’s final feature, which revolves around mismatched in-laws. The brilliant ensemble cast embodies the quotidian absurdities of family life as the characters of the eponymous fathers gradually reveal themselves. Niki is a stoic retired colonel in mourning for his recently deceased son; Florian is a fun-loving, tyrannical vegetarian who bossily micromanages the affairs of both families after his son and Niki’s daughter are wed. Written by Cristi Puiu and Răzvan Rădulescu (Stuff and Dough, The Death of Mr. Lazarescu), Niki and Flo balances dark comedy with humanity and tenderness. “The shocks that arrive in the film’s final act may seem arbitrary, but they are also reminders that normalcy—whether in the vanished, shadowy world of Communism or in the bright, familiar domain of consumer capitalism—is always founded on hypocrisy and menaced by chaos” (A. O. Scott, New York Times).