The Un Certain Regard program premiered the second Russian film in this prestigious competition. Director Larisa Sadilova and producer Larisa Schneiderman showed the real modern Russian outback and forced the director of the festival to pronounce Troubchevsk in French.
This city really exists 500 km from Moscow, in the Bryansk region, where Larisa Sadilova herself comes from (from Bryansk). She studied with Sergei Gerasimov at VGIK at the acting and directing department and her film, a black and white story in the maternity hospital “Happy Birthday”, caused a great response.
The story about Trubchevsk grew out of a short film with the working title “Happy New Year”.
This is a story about adultery in a small town where you can’t hide a match. A trucker neighbor leaves for a flight, his wife, seeing him off, collects food for him, from a house nearby, the husband escorts his wife to the bus to Moscow to sell her knitted products. The van drives away from the town, the bus is asked to stop in the field, and now they are already together. The relationship of a laconic trucker, such a Russian Jason Statham (Egor Barinov) and an appetizing knitter (Christina Schneider) has been going on for a long time, but no one is able to confess to their halves and change something. And then one day, on New Year’s Eve, the truck breaks down, the prospect of celebrating the main family holiday on the road upsets the heroine and she decides to confess everything to her husband. However, she will finally do it only in the spring. Her favorite driver will take her to a distant village, renting a house from a local grandmother, who, renting the house along the way, will tell the story of partisans in the Bryansk region.
In the film, except for the main characters, all other roles were played by local residents, in fact, the whole city was filmed, and it is this technique that makes the film so reliable, almost documentary, because you can outplay a people’s artist, but never a Bryansk grandmother. But the young actress sings and dances excellently, the episode where she seduces her lover to a gypsy song resembles Shukshin’s films with lyrical comedy. Ordinary people in complex and funny at the same time circumstances in the distant outback – this is his theme.
How Trubchev’s suffering will end is not painful to watch, but rather amusing. The film is bright and full of subtle observations of human nature, the relationship of three generations of fathers and children. Shows the beauty of the local nature and demonstrates simple worldly wisdom. All this turns out to be close and understandable in any country, the story is universal and could happen anywhere.
At the premiere, Larisa Sadilova handed over to the director of the festival, Thierry Fremaux, woolen mittens, really knitted in Trubchevsk by local residents, and it was very sincere, like the film itself, warmly received by the festival audience.
Immediately after Cannes, the film will participate in the competition program of the Kinotavr, and will reach the rental in the fall.
For more details of the conversation with the director, see our video interview.