Leto | Denver Film Society | Kirill Serebrennikov | Russia


Kirill Serebrennikov

Biographical, Music, Romance

Russian, EnglishEnglish SubtitlesRussia2018126 min


Like Jafar Pahani (see 3 Faces), Russian director Kirill Serebrennikov is under house arrest in his homeland—and like Pahani, he’s nevertheless driven to make films that serve to some extent as a commentary on artistic freedom.

With his latest feature, Serebrennikov has created an evocative mood piece that doubles as a fictionalized biography of influential pre-perestroika musicians Mike Naumenko (of the band Zoopark) and Viktor Tsoi (of Kino). Mike spends much of his time navigating the Leningrad Rock Club, a state-approved venue where everyone’s an informant and security strictly enforces the prohibition on standing, dancing, or seemingly enjoying the music on any level. In between visits, he transcribes the lyrics of verboten Western artists and engages in flights of fantasy, which are the only ways he can really let loose under the strictures of early 1980s Soviet rule. Meanwhile, talented newcomer Viktor slowly captures Mike’s affections—as well as those of his girlfriend, Natasha. Here’s an expressive depiction of the Soviet Union’s underground music scene in the months before the fall of the Communist regime.

SUBTITLED (Foreign language with on-screen subtitles)

Producer: Pavel Burya, Georgy Chumburidze, Mikhail Finogenov, Murad Osmann, Ilya Stewart | Editor: Yuriy Karikh | Cinematographer: Vladislav Opelyants | Screenwriter: Kirill Serebrennikov, Lily Idov, Mikhail Idov
Cast: Teo Yoo, Irina Starshenbaum, Roman Bilyk, Liya Akhedzhakova, Yuliya Aug