A young man who writes avant-garde plays in the Russian province tells the story of how he voluntarily let himself be admitted to a psychiatric ward to avoid military service. In his account, everyday scenes from the madhouse and childhood memories alternate with parables that have been converted into aesthetically decadent images. "Ya" means "I". Just as the apostles once narrated the life of Jesus, "ya" narrates the life of the clique that has gathered around the "savior" Rom, an icon of the drugs scene and depravity. "Ya" does not even ask who are the real madmen – the patients or the doctors? Nor does it make a difference whether the narrator is hallucinating or whether he is staging a Baroque anti-biblical opera.
Without doubt, Ya is a genre film. But Igor Voloshin goes well beyond filmic references. He brings his own mythologies and symbols to the surface. Trash, decadence and rock'n'roll combine in strong images with music and a highly-stylized aesthetic. Provocatively and with ribald humor, Voloshin creates a tale that is as opulent as it is cruel, which leaves nobody indifferent.
Russian Federation 2009, 88 min
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