Cultural Bridge
France, Italy, Romania / 2008 / French, Romanian dialogue with English subtitles / Colour / 35 mm / 100 minutes
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Bucharest, Rumania, 1993. Poverty is widespread and the country's infrastructure is on the verge of total collapse. Enter Miloud Oukili, a young circus clown, living in Paris. Reading about the street children of Bucharest - the 'boskettari' - forced to survive through begging, stealing or prostitution - he resolves to use his talent to try and help. Arriving in Bucharest, Miloud begins by entertaining these children, gently coaxing out smiles, laughter and trust. One year later, and despite the opposition of corrupt officials, Miloud and his children mounted a street performance. By 1996, he had established 'Fundatia Parada', a charitable organisation for the 'boskettari', which today travels across Europe bringing happiness to children everywhere. Marco Pontecorvo's debut feature crackles like a documentary, capturing the gritty lives of street children with unflinching honesty. 'Pa Ra Da' won a Special Mention (The Pasinetti Awards) at the 2008 Venice Film Festival.


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