About – When Eliza (Maria-Victoria Dragus) gets attacked on her way to school, her father Romeo (Adrian Titieni) goes on a man hunt for the person that did it. Graduation is about compromises and the implications of the parent role.
Graduation follows the ordinary life of Romeo, who is trying to locate the man who attacked his daughter. He does this by investigating the case himself, while getting key information from certain people in the public sector. Romeo does this by giving different people his ‘promise’ to help them with certain issues in their life.
Graduation has a unique style of storytelling, it plays on the ordinary life of a man and his family. However, the way that the film is shot is by small proximities such as small rooms and cars. This enhances the audience’s perception of how to deal with certain issues that unfold, but also the acute town that the characters are in. This works brilliantly on how we have an emotional connection towards Romeo and his family, but ultimately how we feel on the situation on how Romeo puts other characters in these sticky situations.
Romeo is a decent man, who only wants right for his daughter. However, he isn’t the perfect role model a daughter could ask for. He is a, middle-aged, over-weight, having an affair and a harasser. However, within the societies circumstances that are played out, all we can do is be on his side and only see his perception on things. As we are not known to his surroundings we can only judge what we see and that Romeo is a good man. Romeo portrayed by Adrian Titieni, does a fantastic job at foreseeing the truth for his character. Adrian brings to life the ordinary man that we need to know to proceed on the emotion towards his actions, but more so for his love for his family.
We are always faced with new characters, which sees the evolvement of the story. However, when the new character is being spoken about, it is hard to follow due to the overload of new characters. Perhaps this issue is normal in Romania film, but with the overload of characters that are part of the narrative is harder to follow more than a usual drama piece.
Finally, Graduation is a very socialistic film around family and Romanian life. It captures the right amount of realism and perception for someone outside of Romania. The narrative is captivating by having such a heart-beating storyline that intrigues the audience into wanting more. We understand the means of Romeos choices in life on what he is doing, which makes us dislike but admire him throughout.