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The Phantom Father (2011)

Tatal fantoma (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, Romance | 2 March 2012 (Romania)
American professor Robert Traum embarks on an adventurous and amusing journey through Bucovina to find Sami the projectionist, the only person alive that can tell him anything about his ... See full summary »


Lucian Georgescu


Lucian Georgescu, Barry Gifford (based on a story by)
6 nominations. See more awards »


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Credited cast:
Marcel Iures ... Robert Traum
Barry Gifford ... Jack
Mihaela Sirbu ... Tanya
Valer Dellakeza Valer Dellakeza ... Sami (as Valer Delakeza)
Mihai Constantin Mihai Constantin ... Mayor Codrescu
Mimi Branescu ... Alex
Victor Rebengiuc ... Uncle Petre
Mariana Mihut Mariana Mihut ... Aunt Florica
Iosif Pastina Iosif Pastina ... small Robert
Nicodim Ungureanu Nicodim Ungureanu ... Hotel Receptionist
Vitalie Bantas Vitalie Bantas ... Vitali
Marcel Cobzariu Marcel Cobzariu ... Vladimir (as Marcello Cobzariu)
Mirela Oprisor ... Woman from Italy
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Andrei Aradits Andrei Aradits ... Codrescu Sr. (as Andrei Araditz)
Adriana Butoi Adriana Butoi ... Sara Traum


American professor Robert Traum embarks on an adventurous and amusing journey through Bucovina to find Sami the projectionist, the only person alive that can tell him anything about his Romanian Jewish descent. His symbolic journey is filled with danger, the unknown and the surreal, but finally rewarded with a double love: on the one hand he finds romantic love, on the other the passion for old cinema, nomad, popular, naive and generous. Written by Lucian Georgescu

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A different kind of New Romanian Film See more »


Drama | Romance


Not Rated | See all certifications »


Official Sites:

Official site




Romanian | English

Release Date:

2 March 2012 (Romania) See more »

Also Known As:

Duch ojca See more »

Filming Locations:

Romania See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


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Did You Know?


The credits mention three names that aren't present in the film. "Balkanski" is the name of director Lucian Georgescu's father, "Stein" was the name of Barry Gifford's father before emigrating to the US, and "Bose" refers to director Ovidiu Bose Pastina, who was originally supposed to direct the film but unfortunately passed away before production commenced. See more »


Sami: I still believe in happy endings and I dream of the day when you will show up and tell me "I'm Robert Traum". What a beautiful dream!
See more »


Features Pacat (1924) See more »

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User Reviews

Excellent mixture of realism and fantasy. And humor.
27 March 2012 | by Marius_StanSee all my reviews

I saw the movie in Chicago and... well... I loved it! It may be the tender, discrete love story, or the cheerful "on the road" adventure. Or the landscape, or the mixture of sadness and joy, I am not sure what it was but I did like it.

The movie has elements of realism and surrealism, minimalism and maximalism (just kidding...) and above all subtle character relations and warm humor. It was refreshing to get a more luminous view of Romania after "The Death of Mr. Lazarescu". This movie is more like "The Life of Mr. Lazarescu".

The acting was good, superb at times (the bus scene, the hotel room scenes, the countryside visits) and rarely sketchy(some City Hall and caravan scenes). Outstanding directing and solid screenplay. Loved the music too.

All in all a very pleasant experience for an open minded viewer. Don't expect a documentary about the hardships of contemporary Romania. You can watch TV for that. Instead, let yourself dream and play along. And towards the end, take a look at your girlfriend...

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