Director: Aleksey German
Year Released: 2018
Unsuccessful writer Sergei Dovlatov (Milan Marić) drifts around Leningrad speaking with friends, going to parties, making sarcastic comments, hanging around poet Joseph Brodsky (Artur Beschastny) and trying to find his daughter a doll ... all while trying to get his work published. Normally, films about writers tend to be tough to pull off - "inner worlds," "divine intervention," etc. - but German's approach is dream-like and foggy and almost mystical and never content to settle down in one spot for too long - it has a cozy air of world-weariness that lends it a good deal of gravity (trying to be an artist amidst Soviet oppression/paranoia must have been brutal). Marić's depiction of a very complicated man - and the audience's guide through the haunted USSR - has him going from benevolent to indifferent to basically an asshole, which makes sense considering his own inner conflict (he would eventually defect to the States and pass away before he turned 50) and frustration with the world he was living in.