Marina, an upper-class social worker with a doting husband and an enviable downtown apartment, is suddenly transformed into a bizarre twilight version of herself after having been raped by three policemen.
A woman returns to her village after her father's death, who has never loved. She meets a man who spends his days cultivating the land and writing. Each of their meetings will culminate in a need for them to confront physically.
A widowed aeronautics engineer, who has lost his job, travels with his son hopping freight trains from Moscow to Koktebel, a town by the Black Sea, to start a new life with the father's ... See full summary »
Mina is a young single mother living in Oslo with her 6 year old son Felix. She is of Norwegian Pakistani descent with a troubled family relationship. Constantly looking for love, Mina ... See full summary »
It happened in the sixties, during the political thaw in the Soviet Union... but our story unfolds in the coldest terrain of the country. It was an unexplored and unbeaten terrain of ... See full summary »
The action takes place shortly after the end of the Second World War in the Siberian hinterland, among Russians and Germans with damaged personal stories and a strange transformation: the ... See full summary »
A mother wants to reunite with her twin daughters. A young couple marry in church, but immediately after the ceremony, God - or maybe the Devil, or maybe Blind Fate - tests their love in ... See full summary »
Sveta is eager to escape from Norilsk. It's even more of a dream because Maxim is out there in the far-away southern town of Temryuk waiting for her (or so she thinks). Nadya is the essence... See full summary »
Marina is an attractive upper-class woman with an opulent wardrobe and a good-looking husband. She's employed as a social worker, a profession offering meager financial rewards. Thankfully her affluent father provides the supplementary income which her job as well as hapless husband cannot. Yet instead of finding contentment in her win-win situation, Marina carries on an affair with her best friend's husband, and also initiates a bizarre series of erotic encounters with a deadbeat cop who previously raped her. Written by
Depressing portrait of Russian society, not only targeting the police force but also Russian people in general
I saw this film as part of the Rotterdam Film Festival 2012. The police force is used here as the main target while portraying Russian society. Firstly, we have the main plot in the form of three policemen raping around when they get the chance. This alone might be dismissed as an exception to the rule (the proverbial rotten apples). But secondly, we also observe how a law abiding citizen is treated when reporting a stolen passport, where the attitude of the police completely defeats the purpose of bringing a crime to the their attention.
But it is not only the police, albeit on itself enough to leave us with a depressed feeling. The film extends above observations to society in general. For example, it demonstrates you can't expect decent service as a paying customer in a restaurant. And most bystanders are not very helpful either for someone in need, the one exception we see only serving to prove the rule.
Life goes on, even after a radical experience like a rape. Rather than telling family and friends about the dire event, we see it burn inside the victim and change her behavior in many ways: as a social worker (suspecting sex abuse everywhere), and as a family member (insulting all guests one-by-one at a party for her birthday). Following the latter she gets the usual advice to "take a break".
Instead, she proceeds in an unexpected manner, by approaching one of the raping police men. What initially starts as an act of revenge in the elevator (we see her entering with a broken bottle in hand), suddenly turns into a love affair. She even lives with him for a few weeks, cooks his dinner, scrubs his bath tub, and more things for which we cannot begin to understand her underlying motives.
This could have been a great movie, were it not that several scenes were shown out of sequence, thereby causing some confusion. This was not a matter of flash back or forward, which we can cope with as a generally accepted way of story telling. I rather fear it being an attempt to throw a new format on us, about which the professional critics can write and applaud its newness. We, the general public, have our rights too, and want to understand what is going on and how the plot fits together. Nevertheless, I gave the maximum score for the audience award when leaving the theater, due to its contents and particularly how we got some insight in Russian society of today.
1 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?