Thursday, 22 July 2010

Larisa Sadilova: Nothing Personal -Ничего личного (2007)

Director: Larisa Sadilova Script: Larisa Sadilova Camera: Dobrynia Morgachev, Dmitri Mishin Production Design: Nigmat Dzhuraev Music: Abduraim Charyev Cast: Valeri Barinov, Zoya Kaidanovskaya , Marina Leonova, Natalia Kochetova , Alexander Kliukvin , Shukhrat Ergashev Producers: Rustam Akhadov Production: Arsi-Film with ther support of the RF Federal Agency for Culture and Cinematography, Studio Arsi-Film 2007, Russia, 92 min., color, Dolby Digital 5.1 Drama Festivals and awards Participation in the main competition XXIX Moscow International Film Festival and the FIPRESCI Prize - 2007 Award for Best Actor (Valery Barinov ) at the festival " Moscow Premiere " - 2007 The prize for best actress ( Zoe Kaidanovsky ) at the festival KinoAltay " (Russia - Ukraine ) Special Jury Prize IX International Festival "East - West "(Baku ) - 2007 The European premiere of the film in the Film Festival in Rotterdam - 2008

Reviewed by Christina Stojanova© 2008 “Big brother is watching you” was one of the memorable catchphrases from George Orwell's classic 1984, and it has come sadly to symbolize not only the dire practices of the communist totalitarianism in Soviet bloc countries, which the British classic metaphorically targeted, but also increasingly and prophetically the spirit of our own times. The boundaries between prying on people's privacy for security reasons or just watching the popular reality show Big Brother , featured in nationally specific versions by TV stations worldwide, are becoming blurred commensurately with the increasingly unfathomable perception of right and wrong in matters of public and private morals. The characters of Sadilova's latest film, Nothing Personal, inhabit this grey area of ethics, situated in the no-man's land between the fear of forcible inclusion (usually behind the impenetrable borders of a totalitarian country), symbolized by the Old Big Brother, and that of arrogant elitist exclusion, epitomized by the New Big Brother. As in her previous films—Happy Birthday (S dnem rozhdeniia!, 1998 ), With Love, Lilly (S liubov'iu, Lilia, 2002 ), and Babysitter Required (Trebuetsia niania, 2005 )—the narrative is very simple: a certain Zimin (Valerii Barinov), a middle-age employee of a private detective agency in the provinces and obviously a former (retired?) state secret services (KGB) official, is asked to establish a 24/7 surveillance of the apartment of a thirty-something woman, Irina (Zoia Kaidanovskaia). About a third through the film, however, it turns out he has been given the wrong apartment number and has to install a/v devices in the adjacent apartment of a sexy blonde (Mariia Leonova) with an influential lover, evidently for the purpose of blackmail or extortion. Zimin dismantles all the devices from Irina's apartment except for one camera, allowing him to keep watching her—by that time it becomes obvious that his interest in her exceeds his professional involvement. ...

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