In “Spagat,” his feature film debut, Swiss director Christian Johannes Koch
tells the story of a high school teacher whose double life begins to come apart while also examining the difficult life of an immigrant laborer with no papers.
Set in rural Switzerland, the film follows Marina, a married mother and teacher who is having an affair with Ukrainian immigrant Artem. Their secret relationship is threatened when the man’s daughter, Ulyana
, is arrested for stealing — an incident that has far-reaching consequences for all of them. “Spagat,” a German and Russian word that means both “balancing act” and “the splits,” reflects the situation Marina finds herself in as she tries to find a solution to an increasingly growing problem as well as that of the ambitious Ulyana, an aspiring young gymnast.
Speaking to Variety about the film, Koch, who wrote the script with Josa Sesink
, said several factors led to the making “Spagat,