Since bio-political authorities have access to the life of the individual, a citizen’s status can be read off forms and documents. Ticking some boxes, entering dates, signing, stamping, and registration is complete - complete is the human being as a dataset. Especially most emotional moments in life are very quickly transferred into tables of figures. Happiness of marriage and love, sadness of death and mourning. The young Russian woman Alina Rudnitskaya lives up to the Petersburg studio of documentary film with its long-standing tradition. Her protagonists resemble the classical look of the 60’s so well that it seems time has stood still for 40 years. Luckily, the only thing missing is the off-voice commentary. In high-contrast black and white and very precise shots unfolds the big and yet small world of the Citizen Advise Bureau. Psychological torture on both sides (the visitor’s and the employee’s) and an emotional spectrum ranging from phlegmatic calmness and pragmatic placidity to serious desperation and pure hysteria.
Alina Rudnitskaya was born 1976 in Zaozernyj (Murmansk), Russia. From 1994 to 1997 she attended the Academy of Aerospace Engineering, but then she enrolled in the University of Culture and Arts in St. Petersburg where she graduated Film Directing. She has been working at the St. Petersburg Documentary Film Studio since 2002. Among her most acclaimed films in the past are Communal Residence (2002), Amazons (2003), Rural Lessons (2004), Civil Status (2005, Big Stamp winner at 2007 ZagrebDox), Besame Mucho (2006) and Vixen Academy: How To Be A Bitch (2008), I Will Forget This Day (2011, screened at 2012 ZagrebDox).
2005, 30', bw, 35 mm
St. Petersburg Documentary Film Studio