Elwira Niewiera & Piotr Rosolowski
Germany, Poland, 76 min
Natasha, an opera singer, leaves behind her husband and daughter in Russia to join Rafael, the Minister for Sport of Abkhazia, a territory within Georgia currently recognised by five states. Set in a decrepit seaside town on the Black Sea coast, this documentary comedy, as affectionate as it is ironic, intertwines the complexity of a love story with the sleepiness of an isolated state.
After the excellent The Art of Disappearing, co-directed with Bartek Konopka and screened at VdR in 2013, Piotr Rosolowksi returns with a feature film directed in collaboration with Elwira Niewiera. Natasha, an opera singer, abandons her career, leaving behind a husband and daughter in Russia to join Rafael, the Minister for Sport of Abkhazia. It’s a love story that starts to take serious form, intoxicated with hope and romantic enthusiasm. But Abkhazia, located within Georgia, is still suffering today from the painful conflict that pitted the Russian Army and Abkhazian separatists against the Georgian Army in the early 1990s. Recognised by only five states, the territory exists in political isolation. In this decrepit seaside town on the Black Sea coast, the young couple’s relationship is closely filmed, and seems to reflect the conflicts of this place and its unique situation. A documentary comedy, as affectionate as it is ironic, intertwining the complexity of a love story with the sleepiness of a confined territory without a future, and featuring some surprising situations, such as the organisation of the World Dominoes Championship.