- In Retrospect
- EU Youth Cinema
- CEE FILMS
Benjamin drives the people around him to the verge of despair. Since the young Russian student started devoting himself to Christian fundamentalism and swears on everything in the Bible, noone seems safe from his verbal fervour. He accuses his divorced mother of adultery, and blames his friend’s parents’ sinful behaviour for their son’s walking impediment. His religion teacher has to endure the accusation of the Orthodox church being sanctimonious, and the revealing swimwear of his female classmates is proof of their voluptuousness. Only his biology teacher Elena tries to resist his fanatic conversion attempts because she feels obligated to science. Her desperate wish to understand Benjamin’s religiosity also turns into an obsession, which increasingly tests not only her private life, but also her profession and intellect. In Kirill Serebrennikov’s drama, bizarre and serious scenes counter-balance each other. The “current warning against false prophecy“ (MDR) owes its thematically accurate atmosphere to numerous flashes of Bible passages, the sparse use of music, extraordinarily long camera shots and the quickly escalating, hysterical dialogues.
Kirill Serebrennikov, Marius von Mayenburg
Pyotr Skvortsov, Victoria Isakova, Svetlana Bragarnik
Feature Film Competition
Russian with Germ. sub.