In a First World War trench, a uniformed Russian boy with freckles loses his sight during a German gas attack. Due to his keen sense of hearing, he is kept at the front and deployed to listen out for enemy planes at the giant metal pipes that form a kind of early-warning system.
The colours are faded, as if the images were from another time. But there’s also a stylised, abstract quality to the grainy footage. Little by little, the bodies take centre stage – their vulnerability and their energy, they almost seem like creatures. The camera and the editing keep pace with the young blind man. He lurches through the military camp, annoying the other men because he can only grasp his surroundings by touch. His face remains open, innocent. He seems to be trying to find a place for himself as a soldier, both literally and figuratively. Contemporary documentary recordings of orchestra rehearsals for Sergei Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 3 Op. 30 (1909) and Symphonic Dances Op. 45 (1940) don’t interrupt the narrative flow, but rather translate motifs and themes into an acoustic resonance chamber.
Russian Federation 2019
72’ · Colour
Vladimir Korolev (Alexey)Mikhail Buturlov (Nazarka)Artem Leshik (Makar Petrovich)Danil Tyabin (Corpsman)Sergey Goncharenko (Officer)Filipp Dyachkov (Propagandist)
Born in in Saporoschje, Soviet Union, Ukraine in 1988. He earned a degree in Computer Science. Malchik russkiy is his first feature-length film.Filmography
2011 Novyi Prometei (New Prometheus); 7 min. 2012 Pesni, chto peli do menya (Songs That People Sang Before I Was Born); 12 min. 2014 Ornament; 20 min. 2016 Opyty (Esse); 55 min. 2017 Zhizn' moego druga (Life Story of My Friend); 22 min. 2019 Malchik russkiy (A Russian Youth)
Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2019
Example of Intonation Fund