A young student Shurik comes to a remote mountainous region in search of ancient legends and traditions. Fooled by the corrupt local governor, he helps him to kidnap a beautiful young girl, but soon realizes what he's done.
An ordinary Soviet building manager, living in the 20th century, is extremely similar to a Tsar of All Rus' - Ivan IV the Terrible (1530-1584). He would never learn about it, but one day his neighbor created a time machine.
It so happens that peaceful kindergarten teacher is incredibly similar to the terrible villain who stole the helmet of Alexander the Great. And villain's accomplices are unexpectedly similar to children - they also need love and care.
Injured on the job Vasily Kuzyakin gets a ticket to the resort. There he meets femme fatale Raisa Zakharovna, and once under the charm, moves to live with her. Unfortunately, a new life is not all that sweet as dreamed hapless Vasily.
A group of old friends have a tradition of going to a public bathing house on New Years eve. Incidentally, too much vodka and beer makes two of them unconscious. The problem is that one of them (Sasha) has to go to Leningrad but another one (Zhenya) goes. Zhenya wakes up at Leningrad airport. Believing that he is still in Moscow he takes a taxi and goes home. The street name, building and even apartment number, the way an apartment complex looks the same and the key coincide completely - just typical Soviet-type 'economy' architecture. Imagine the surprise of Nadya when she enters her apartment and finds a man without trousers in her bed. What's more - Nadya's fiancé also finds him there...Written by
Konstantin Dlutskii <email@example.com> and sergiek
The two apartment buildings in Moscow and in Leningrad (known as St. Petersburg today) with the same address, 3-ya ulitsa Stroiteley, 25 ("25, 3rd Constructors Street"), are actual buildings Nos. 125 and 113 in Prospekt Vernadskogo, Moscow. They are only 700 meters apart. Moscow or St. Petersburg never had streets named "3-ya ulitsa Stroiteley". See more »
When Ippolit approaches Nadya's home his car is covered with snow, but about half an hour later when he drives off the car is completely clean. Though there is time enough for such action it is highly unlikely that a good Samaritan neighbor would have removed the snow from the car at that time of night on New Years eve. See more »
[Zhenya has just come back from chasing Ippolit]
I tried to chase him down, but he drove away... He drives faster than I run.
See more »
Let me sort out what in this film is Soviet, what is Russian, and what is universal.
Soviet is the background, including the cartoon which precedes the appearance of humans: a man with a tube kills any architect originality, even so innocent as balconies. As a consequence, the same buildings are put up in Artica as well in a southern desert before surprised camels. The Soviet reality is the basis of the plot with identical buildings in different cities. Also the New Year tree rather that the Christmas tree is Soviet. However, as the story unfolds, the Soviet reality recedes into little visible background. An exception is a line in one of the songs: if you do not have a dog, your neighbor cannot poison your dog.
Russian are the beautiful poems which are made into songs. There are also some views of Leningrad, but actually only a few, with the St. Isaac Basilica shown several times from different sides.
The cast and the technical crew are largely Russian, but not only. Obviously Armenian, Georgian and Jewish names are listed. The actress playing Nadya has been imported from Central Europe; Barbara Brylska is a Polish actress, well known also from a number of other movies made in Poland as well as in other countries.
The appeal of the film is truly universal ! This is the reason why viewers from countries so disparate as Latvia, Ukraine and China like this film so much (not to mention Texans). The love-jealousy quadrangle, two mothers, friends of Zhenya and colleagues of Nadya could have lived in many countries around the world. Even the story of the same address could have happened for instance in Germany where practically every city and town has Bahnhofstrasse and Poststrasse.
Finally, the atmosphere of this film is unique - a word which very rarely can be used discussing films. We have seen other films directed by Eldar Ryazanov, all of them good, but none comparable to this one. All that takes place in the film is plausible, it could have happened in reality. At the same time, there is the feeling of poetic, unreal and sublime. These two basically opposed reactions to the film coexist somehow in the viewer; this simply does not happen in movies, films directed by Krzysztof Kieslowski excepted. Irony of the Fate is a truly wonderful film, alive 30 years after being created; it will enchant future generations as well.
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