See https://issues.apache.org/jira/browse/PARQUET-843 . parquet-cpp was generating files that set the root schema's repetition to REPEATED, which threw off Impala's schema resolution so it couldn't read the file.
PARQUET-843 includes an example file
The field description in parquet.thrift explicitly says that the root schema's repetition should be unset (https://github.com/apache/parquet-format/blob/master/src/main/thrift/parquet.thrift#L231) but it seems like other tools may write out various things there.
We should just ignore the repetition on the root schema, since it's meaningless.