In international news coverage, Russia is at the forefront of topics around foreign politics, but the land with its vast reach from the Polar Sea to China and its diverse ethnicities remains in the shadows. What is people’s everyday life like? In six documentaries our guest country section conveys these heterogenous realities. We go by train from Moscow to Vladivostok and meet the people on board as the landscapes pass by outside. The films recount the fine line between tradition and modernity, mothers wavering between patience and a nervous breakdown and, with a great deal of wit, an inner clash of cultures between Yakutia and Moscow. A never-ending journey, inward and outward-facing perspectives and a special event: the Russian documentary pioneer Dziga Vertov’s first film rediscovered and restored.
A brief introduction to the current situation of Russian documentary film with all its difficulties, possibilities and prospects by curator and filmmaker Evgeniia Marchenko.