English | | Contact Us 
Festival 2005 Films Screenings Jury Awards News Comments Guests Gallery Organisers About Us
Director:  Dmitri Meskhiyev

Russia, 2004, 112 min, color

Dmitry Meskhievs film revisits the Russian Second World War film with a new and frightening intensity. Caught by the German invasion, three prisoners escape to a nearby village, where one of them has his home. There they meet his father, an anti-Bolshevik and former kulak, who is the local headman and has links with the occupying forces. The drama soon becomes complex as he tries to protect his son and, in the process, the army major and Jewish officer who have escaped with him.

The long section set in the village, when the three prisoners remain hidden and gradually interact with the family and community is skilfully directed, the action sequences violent and disturbing, and the framing of characters against landscape worthy of some of the masters of widescreen composition. The deliberately stylised photography, bled to approach monochrome, creates a strong and claustrophobic atmosphere. Violence is shown as meaningless, painful, and traumatic, and the cause in which it is exercised a matter of survival rather than ideology. The abstract nature of the conflicts suggests that the films real subjects lie in the present as much as the past.
Peter Hames

Russian director Dmitri Meskhiyev was born in Leningrad in 1963. He studied film directing in Marlen Khutsiyevs class at the State Institute of Cinematography (VGIK). In 1980 he began his career as an assistant director at Lenfilm Studios. In 1990 he made his feature film debut with Gambrinus, written by Valery Todorovsky. Meskhiyev also directs videos and commercials.
2004  Our own
© 2001 - 2005 Production Company "Art Fest" Idea & Research - created by