Olga Shuvalova as Girl Prostitute and Viktor Nemet as Georgy in MY JOY a film by Sergei Loznitsa. Picture courtesy Kino Lorber, Inc. All rights reserved.
- Olena Yershova
- Od Howell
- Valery Kulyk
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My Joy (2010/2011)
Opened: 09/30/2011 Limited
|Cinema Village...||09/30/2011 - 10/13/2011||14 days|
Trailer: Click for trailer
Genre: Ukrainian Drama (Russian w/English subtitles)
Russia, present day, summer.
Truck driver Georgy picks up his latest load and heads off for the highway, stopping off first at home, where he avoids contact with his wife. His journey is interrupted by two traffic police at a checkpoint. When he evades their seemingly unncessary attentions and returns to his cab, he finds an old man sitting in the front seat. The man asks for a lift, and in return, tells Georgy the sobering story of his return from the German front in 1946.
After the old man disappears, Georgy drives into a traffic jam on the main road. A teenage prostitute appears and offers to show him a short-cut -- along with her services -- and they end up at a village market. There, hurt by Georgy's attempt to show her some kindness, she abandons him.
Leaving the market, Georgy continues his journey alone and ends up lost in a field. By now, night has fallen and his truck has broken down. Three tramps appear out of the darkness, planning a robbery. They invite Georgy for a meal by a roadside fire and offer him a drink. Georgy refuses alcohol and asks for directions back to the highway, but the meal ends violently and abruptly...
Ten years ago, I was working at the Documentary Film Studios in St. Petersburg, travelling to locations throughout Russia by car. We made frequent stops on the way to take photographs of people; it's a very common sight, people journeying by foot along the main roads.
Once we pulled up to photograph a man with a worn-out face, dressed in a shabby jacket and a ragged sweater, carrying a slim bag. He peered inside our car, examined its contents and asked for food. We gave him what we had. He neatly packed the food into his bag and asked me: "Haven't you got any apple jelly?"
"No. Why?" I asked.
"They always gave us apple jelly in prison," he said.
Since then I kept a packet of apple jelly in my car. But we never saw that man again, and other people did not ask for it. So I got the idea of making a film about apple jelly. During my travels through provincial Russia -- I made most of my films in the provinces -- I collected lots of stories of this kind, and, I guess, they were bursting to get out of me. I decided to write a script.
The best chance one gets to describe a place is if one travels through it. The best chance one has to study a place is if one gets stuck in it. This is why my film has such a structure. The film's ending is logical, as it is a clear manifestation of the qualities of the place.
On the market square of a small town a man came up to me. "Listen, bro, how is it going in our hometown?" he asked. He had seen the St. Petersburg registration plates on my car. The man told me a story, which I used as a basis for this script. When he finished his story he asked me, "Do you think I'll be killed?"
"You will be killed," said I.
"Then give us a fag!"
We smoked together in silence, and then he left without saying good-bye.
And his story remained.
-- Sergei Loznitsa