Short Film Profile

Apele Tac

Romania, 1986: Gregor and Vali want to get away. Both need each other, yet there is mutual distrust. One night Gregor finds his doubts confirmed. In the end only hope is left.

Film notes

I was born in in 1979 in Timisoara in the Western part of Romania. I spent my childhood in the so-called „darkest period“ of Ceausescu’s regime. Even though I was protected by my family, I grew up with my parents’ and grandparents’ fear to avoid any possible mistake, because mistakes could easily harm one or even bring one to jail. Whispering or talking only behind one´s hand was something usual.
I visited the German elementary school in Timisoara and most of my colleagues were Germans. Each year someone „disappeared“ or didn´t return after vacation, but no one talked about it. Between us kids rumors were put out that the family might have fled, older kids told us horrible stories about soldiers shooting families or smashing their heads. I grew up with stories about people who wanted, who had or who failed to cross the border. The border to freedom. We felt, freedom has to be the opposite of Romania. My family never planed to escape Romania, but honestly all of us dreamt of a fairytale-land called West-Germany. We immigrated to Germany immediatly after Ceausescu´s fall. By living in Germany and by meeting „survivors“ I slowly understood that there must be thousands of those who managed to flee, but even more thousands who died trying. During my research I found out that the Western border of Romania was the bloodiest and most brutal behind the Iron Curtain. More people died than at the inner German border but no one cared, as Romania was surrounded by communist countries. Probably each story is worth telling as it is a story of black despair, big hope and final success or failure. All of them are human stories, dramatic, sometimes tragic and sometimes, like all human stories, also a bit funny. „Silent River“ is inspired by one of my best friends’ father’s story. Framed by the darkest period in Europe’s recent history I wanted to make an emotional and powerful film about a man who is at fate’s and force’s mercy because of his longing for a better future.
communism escape




Copyright © 2011 Filmallee, Daniel Schmidt, Strada Film, University of Television and Film Munich and Bayerischer Rundfunk

Details of awards for this film are available to members.

Log in

Previous screenings

International Shortfilm Festival of Bueu
5 Sep – 10 Sep | Bueu, Spain
Sintetitza: Pyrenees International Short Film Festival
18 Sep – 25 Sep | Berga, Spain
Sedicicorto: International Film Festival Forlì
3 Oct – 9 Oct | Forlì, Italy
Essonne European Film Festival
15 Nov – 27 Nov | Ris Orangis, France

Film details

Dialogue languages

Subtitle languages


Aspect ratio

Production formats

Additional details, including film categories, dialogue/subtitle languages and technical details are available to members.

Log in

More details & images available to members
Information on this profile is provided by the film owners and/or compiled from available sources | Profile updated 15 Sep 2011