DORA, the movie - short synopsis
a story about immigration and discrimination in London
“Romania 1996, its six years since communism regime has ended, Ceausescu and his wife have been executed, yet the people are still living deplorable lives. Passports are scarce, travel and the western lives seen in magazines and on TV no more than fantasy.” ‘Dora’ is the dramatic story of a young girl from a village deep in the Romanian countryside who decides to escape. When the dreamy-eyed, devout Christian girl finds out that her cousin smuggles desperate local villagers to the West in his van, she believes that her lifelong dream to meet Princess Diana is finally coming true. Dora, a university graduate, leaves Romania in a heartbeat, promising to repay her cousin for the terrifying journey as soon as she enters London’s squalid illegal alien work force, always keeping her dream to meet Princess Diana firmly in her sites. Smuggled in the back of a furniture van, Dora travels 1900 km to London… her life is about to change beyond belief… Landing in a gray neighborhood outside central London, possibly one of its most ordinary and dull place, using all her ‘charm’ and intelligence it’s not long before Dora lands herself a position in a 5 star Hotel as a chambermaid. While there, Dora meets a real Duke who falls in love with her immediately, but she’ll never date an old man. She hates old men because of her abusive, alcoholic father who used to bit her up and wanted her to marry a peasant to get rid of her, not to support her any more... He never appreciated her or her education. He never heard of respect. After the initial novelty of London, life wears off and she hasn't yet caught so much of a glimpse of Princess Diana, she begins to miss her family desperately. Through a stroke of luck and more than a little daring: by stealing an Irishman’s passport with a photograph, which is the spitting image of her brother ‘Daniel’, whilst cleaning a room, is not long before Dora managed to get her beloved brother, Daniel, over the border into England. She’s also stumbled onto a surefire way to rise up in the world; her life is about to change. Dora’s life is starting to prosper. Not only is she falling in love with Julian a barman from the hotel but also she’s setting up a people trafficking business selling stolen passports to her friends back home. She is making more money than she could have ever dreamed off. All is going well until dissatisfied at not being able to leave Britain to visit her family she approaches Charlie, the gangster who supplies false passports and papers… at a price. Dora embarks on a life of stealing and selling passports to Romanians, while her brother works illegally on a building site, expertly dodging the immigration officials and police. All is going so well for Dora and Daniel, but when Princess Diana dies in Paris and Dora's adoring English boyfriend Julian turns out to be dating a posh English girl, Dora is obviously devastated, and realizes that her plans to rise in the closed, cruel world of London will never happen. Now, more than ever, Dora wants to be an independent businesswoman in Romania, owning her own travel agency. All she needs is the visa to travel back and forth, which costs her not only all her savings, but also her most prized possession: her virginity. After Charlie the con artist rapes Dora... she has a visa, she’s broke, and she’s out of her mind because she’s been raped, and that goes against her whole value system, and she will never be seen as pure in her community again...
After all these bad experiences, Dora converts from a sweet girl with principles into a devil. She travels back to Romania to scout out her new travel agency and see her family. While she is there, she is made more aware of her non-virgin status, as people seemed to scorn and look differently at her. Her home village she loved, people, adorable family, all looked different.. Is it because she changed or they changed…? Dora feels that she does not belong to her own place anymore. On the dark side of her nature, Dora accepts to smuggle ten more people to London, which she is now morally obliged to do, as she has already taken half their money and left to London against her brother wish.
On the other hand, Daniel is followed by trouble every single day and he decided to return home for good. The net is closing… the immigration people are after Daniel and now Charlie and his gangsters want him. Princess Diana has died a tragic death. Heartbroken Dora agrees with Daniel that it is time for them to leave, but before her and Daniel can depart she persuades him to let her traffic those ten more people into the country. The money will set them up for life.
Finally, Dora arranges to meet Daniel at the airport to return home to Romania, although before she goes she needs to buy a few stolen passports from one of the chambermaids at the five stars hotel where she used to work, when she bumps into The Duke, who insists that it is his biggest pleasure to give her a lift. An almighty chase across London ensues… Will she make it to the plane in time or will the immigration police or the gangster get to Daniel first? Is The Duke an old man like rest, is he like her 'father's ghost' or is he her angel…?
Later on, Dora sets up a shrine to Daniel in a darkened room. She goes through huge doors onto a bright, sunny, Mediterranean veranda.The Duke surprises her with an invitation to the Queen’s Ball and a gorgeous frock to wear.