23 December 2013 5:47 PM, PST | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

In Romanian helmer Adrian Sitaru’s “Domestic,” the intrusion of different animals into a domestic space — specifically, a dog, a chicken, a rabbit, a pigeon and a cat — sets off rapid-fire arguments, negotiations, recriminations and reconciliations. Sitaru, best known for his award-winning shorts (and 2011 Locarno prizewinner “Best Intentions”), constructs the film as a series of tragicomic vignettes set in the similarly laid-out flats of an apartment building. Filled with vivid characters (most thesped by Sitaru regulars) anxious to impose their confused vision on the chaos around them, the film finds both pathos and humor in absurdity. Its ambiguous tone, however, grounded in working-class Romanian mundanity, may nix wider distribution. 

Largely shot from single fixed-camera setups within the relative intimacy of cramped rooms, the film revolves around the households of three men: Lazar (Adrian Titieni), Mihaes (Gheorghe Ifrim) and Toni (Sergio Costache). Lazar, a mild-mannered teacher and the designated building administrator, »

- Ronnie Scheib

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