The pair hardly speak, something Cornelia blames on his girlfriend, Carmen (Ilinca Goia), who fails to live up to her standards, and whom Cornelia wholeheartedly believes is the sole reason for her son's withdrawn demeanour. However, when Barbu is involved in a tragic car accident, killing a small child in the process, Cornelia is thrust back into his life. Her maternal instincts kick in and for a brief while, its like she has her son back. Calling in favours from a plethora of eminent members of the local community, Cornelia grasps her chance to win back her beloved Barbu. Yet, despite her best intentions, this motherly affection soon begins to reveal itself as a self-serving manipulation over her beleaguered flesh and blood.
Fully embracing her character's flaws and eccentricities, Gheorghiu presents us will an empowered, yet fragile woman who can plough through a busy room with the destructive ferocity of a whirlwind, constantly driven by an insatiable hunger for love and respect. It's a striking performance that successfully turns this serpentine monster of manipulation and arrogance into an curiously compelling and endearing character. Am often suffocating and overbearing work, Child's Pose is also a deeply compassionate film about the emotionally crippling effects of loss - and an enlightening examination of contemporary Romanian society.
The 57th BFI London Film Festival takes place from 9-20 October, 2013. For more of our LFF 2013 coverage, simply follow this link.