RO

In production

Holy Father

Tatal nostru

How do you react to the unexpected news that your girlfriend is pregnant? How do you prepare to become a good father when you grew up without one? The camera was always my ally, so I start documenting this very personal journey, to confront my fears, my thoughts and even my past. I want to know what it means to be a father, so I can be a good father for my child.

Extreme joy and terrifying doubts come into our hearts when my girlfriend holds a positive test result in her hands. The clock is ticking: less than 9 months.

We start sharing this amazing news with our family. This proves challenging, as we both grew up in dysfunctional families. I want to give my father the news, but the most difficult step is coming to terms with the idea that he left when I was a child. He left us not for another family, he left us for God. How could I compete with that? He is a monk on Mount Athos, one of the most extreme places of monastic life. I call him “Holy Father”.

With the heaviness of universal questions onto me, I drive towards Mount Athos. There, I find a “Father” alienated by all worldly things, including his own past and family. While monastic life unfolds in front of us, with its rituals, beautiful scenery and diluted time, there we are: a father and a son trying to (re)connect. I try to understand and forgive, so most of the film follows the encounters with my father, during several visits. But when he finds out about his future grandchild, “Holy Father” shows no intention of going into the depths of the past. What is there to be resolved in what way, then? In the end, doubts, challenges, hidden pain from the past seem to only arise.

But as the beautiful baby girl’s arrival approaches, each time I return home, we feel as future parents that there are greater things happening: right there and then, in our home, in her belly. The quest for answers and reconciliation, the anxieties and the anger seem to be making way for something much more meaningful.
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