75 min

In production

Chasing Stumps

După cioate

Directing: Mihai Gavril DragoleaRadu Mocanu


While documenting illegal wood practices in Romania, filmmakers Mihai and Radu team up with Tibi, a self-proclaimed activist. Filming the activist’s bitter fight against the National Forestry Administration, the directors get sucked into Tibi’s obsessive endeavors. Radu and Mihaiu try to understand his true motives.
One day Tibi suggests a trip into the forest, to a spot he had visited before. Soon, 12 angry men with axes and bats attack them. Tibi was stripped naked, beaten violently, and humiliated. Radu took a blow to the head that caused him temporary memory loss. Mihai was beaten up, managed to escape, and called the police. The video camera was thrashed, and the memory cards disappeared. A media scandal brakes out, resulting in what Tiberiu calls: a perfect storm of public attention. The filmmakers try to figure out what happened. They sue their attackers, and together with their lawyer try to hold accountable those responsible, but fail, as the judicial system seems indifferent. Meanwhile, Tibi gets ill but manages to recover. The directors visit him only to discover that he has restarted his wood processing business, and the activist has turned into a profitable entrepreneur.
A national protest breaks out. All forest rangers working for the National Forestry Administration protest the new law passed by the Romanian Government. The law will transfer the forest state management from the Forestry Administration to private companies. Tibi, the newly turned entrepreneur, disrupt their protest. His hidden agenda is revealed. It seems that a media push has been orchestrated to destabilize the state-owned administration. The filmmakers uncover how all sides are in a battle for forest ownership. The forest falls victim to each side, trees seem to be the only ones with no hidden agenda.
Mihai has been planting trees on lands inherited for some time, Radu joins in, as the individual rebellion and action seems the best way to save our trees and forests.


Ex Oriente Film 2022 projects revealed
30. 5. 2022

Ex Oriente Film 2022 projects revealed

We are proud to present 12 documentary projects that have been selected for the 20th edition of the Ex Oriente Film workshop. Find all about them in this article.
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