Romanian worker Mattias (Grigore) gets fired from his job at a German slaughterhouse, and goes home to his village in Transylvania. There he touches base with estranged wife Ana (Barladeanu) and gentle son Rudi (Blenyesi), who has stopped speaking after a traumatic incident in the woods. Mattias is drawn back to ex-lover Csilla (Slate), who manages a bread factory. When Csilla decides to hire three Sri Lankans to work there, simmering resentment erupts in the town.
Dark, unflinching drama from director Mungiu (“4 Months, 3 Weeks, and 2 Days”) vividly portrays the downside of globalization in Europe, with more open borders and a mobile, diverse workforce leading to a rise in nativism and prejudice, particularly against black and brown workers. This is a blunt portrayal of human fear and ignorance, as the arrival of three harmless, hardworking men causes an uproar. The extended town hall sequence is a highlight. What’s most unnerving is that this phenomenon is nothing new, and hardly restricted to Europe. Nominated for the Palme d’Or at Cannes, “R.M.N.” reaffirms Mungiu’s position as a filmmaker of the first rank.