Hidden world of booths on the streets of a big city and portraits of the people who work inside those booths day after day.
"When I was a child I used to walk around town, and I often noticed people sitting in booths. And I asked myself: Why are they sitting there? Maybe they are serving out some sort of punishment. What are they doing inside their booths? What are they thinking about? They're probably hot in there. Or maybe they're cold. Do they have home? A family? What kind of people are they?" - the film in ironical manner tries to answer these questions. It's a film about big city people living inside their booths...
For Home Viewing
Soviet school, Olympic Bear, death of Brejnev, Perestroika, the long awaited adult life. The trees under my window used to be so small, and now it's difficult to see anything behind them.
Nowadays, when the Russian media seems to ignore the Common Man, and revolves only around the Mighty, the Wealthy and the Famous, I want to bring the common men and women back into the limelight. The idea behind these series springs from nostalgia for good old Socialist Realism. In our Soviet childhood we used to see many ordinary, though carefully picked, people on screen, in documentaries and on propaganda reels. Sometimes, if the story was done well, it gave us a nice feeling of belonging in a big happy nation, with all its different walks of life. Now I want to see and show the ordinary people again - only this time I will not be focusing on their labour achievements, but on the people themselves and the diverse segments of everyday life that they reflect and represent. Andy Warhol once said that in the future, everyone will be famous for 15 minutes. Now, as the future has come so close, I think, people in my home town St. Petersburg - or Piter, as we call it on familiar terms - should finally get an advance on what he promised. Featuring stories of a musician, businessman, schoolgirl, artist, lawyer, pensioner, actress, vet, teacher and many more, the series creates a kaleidoscope of daily life in this strange city of which everyone has mixed feelings.
Mikhail Zheleznikov was born in Leningrad in 1972. Made films for ARTE and YLE, Corona Films, Saint-Petersburg Documentary Film Studio.
Filmography: 2010 Together (Vmeste), 4 min., HD - a short reflection on lonely dog walking.2009 Koli 147, 147 sec., mute, DVCAM - a video art shot out of the window in Artists-in-Residence studio. Screened at the exhibition at Kolin Ryynanen.2009 For Home Viewing (Dlia Domashnego Prosmotra), 29 min., HDV - a story of a young man, growing up in the USSR and Post-Soviet Russia. Supported by Jan Vrijman Fund. Premiered at IDFA. Festivals: ZagrebDox, Tampere FF,Documenta Madrid, Huesca FF, Curtas Vila De Conde (Prize Onda Curta).2008 Booths (Budka), 27 min., HDV (transfer to 35 mm) - documentary about the world of street booths in St. Petersburg. Produced by the St. Petersburg Documentary Film Studio for the Russian Ministry of Culture. Festivals: Dakino, Plus Cameraimage, Bamberg FF, Clermont-Ferrand, Punto De Vista, ZagrebDox, Go Short, Huesca, Harkov Siren (Prize for originality and style), Cheboksary IFF, Kratkofil (Prize for best documentary), Zolotoy Buben (Diploma), Unlimited (Second prize), TIFF, IFVA 15 (the finalist of documentary competition).2008 Timewarp, 15 min., DV - experimental documentary about the last seconds of life. Festivals: 31 Norwegian Short FF, Tehran ISFF, Tampere FF.2006 Collection No1 (Kollekcia No1), 19 min., 35 mm - a documentary about Soviet childhood. Produced by the St. Petersburg Documentary Film Studio for the Russian Ministry of Culture. So far it has been shown at Punto De Vista, DocAviv, ZagrebDox, Tampere FF, Message To Man (Prize for best short documentary), Festival Of Festivals, 29 Moscow International FF, dokART, Mecal, Winterthur, Warszawski Festiwal Filmowy, Prague Short FF, Jihlava FF.2005 Good Morning!, You Are Not Alone, 8 Women, 3x2 min., DVD - series of video art works, shot in Azerbaijan. Screened at NEON gallery (Sweden), IZOLENTA (St. Petersburg), etc.2004 The Flock (Klin), 6 min., DV - experimental documentary about hunting. Screened at OTKAT festival (St.Petersburg), Festival of Russian Art (Berlin), NEON gallery (Sweden), STOY KTO IDET festival (Moscow), ECOFILMS (Greece).2004 Children Of The Corn (Deti Kukuruzi), 20 min., DVCAM - a documentary about corn campaign in the USSR. Produced by the St. Petersburg Documentary Film Studio for the Russian Ministry of Culture.2003 "Valera Elizarov", "Larissa Pogoretskaya", "Church Bells" - 3 x 10 min., Dig. Beta - documentary episodes for YLE1 and ARTE, co-produced with Corona Films.2003 Lara, Her Dogness (Ee Sobachestvo Lara), 16 min., DV - a documentary about a lady and her 21 dogs. Screened at Festival der Nationen (Austria), OTKAT (St.Petersburg), KIASMA (Finland), Vidi_Festival (Valencia, 2006).2002 Tales on the Marshes (Skazki Na Bolote), 5 min., DV - a video-essay on the history of St. Petersburg. Screened at more than 20 international film festivals (Tampere FF, FIPA, Leipzig IFF, dokumentART, Message to Man, etc.), received several awards, incl. the Prize For Best Short Film from Bavarian Television at Regensburg Short Film Week 2003; purchased by KIASMA museum (Helsinki, Finland).2001 Something in the Air (Chto-to V Atmosfere), 51 min., DV - a documentary about foreigners living in St. Petersburg. Screened at Deboshir IFF (St. Petersburg, 2001).
Saint-Petersburg Documentary Film Studio
12 Krukov Canal
190068 St. Petersburg
ul. ak. Konstantinova 12-80
195427 St. Petersburg
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