Barnet transcends mere political satire with this charming take on an age-old comedic trope: the contract marriage. Natasha is a milliner from a village outside of Moscow, and every day she travels to the capital to sell the hats she and her grandfather make. One day, en route to the city, she meets Ilya, and soon realises he has no home to go back to. Not only an indictment of the housing shortage at the time, this whimsical caper celebrates the triumph of youthful sincerity over greed and dishonesty.
This film will be screening at the Cine Lumiere. Booking link available soon.
Boris Barnet (1902-1965) was born in Moscow in a family of an English printer. Boris went to the Moscow Art School but joined the Red Army at the age of 18. After returning from the war he went to college and trained as a boxing instructor. However, his passion for arts led him to act and later direct. In 1927 he shot his first feature, a comedy film, The Girl with a Hatbox. His 1928 film The House on Trubnaya, was rediscovered in the mid-1990s and now ranks as one of the classic Russian silent films. Barnet’s gift of artistic invention that made him stand out from the crowd of Soviet directors. He was admired, among many, by Andrei Tarkovsky.
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