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Thursday, 12 June 2008

Nina Shorina "Door"






Nina Shorina's 1986 classic Door has a dramatic opening as a giant of a man stands outside an upstairs window and then dives towards the ground, to pick himself up as nimbly as an Olympic gymnast. The next entrant strolls up to the front door, briefcase in hand, only to briskly pass the door and shinny up the drainpipe. A young lad watches in bemusement as an elderly lady, shopping bag at the ready, is let down from the highest window in a basket, being greeted most politely by her drainpipe shinnying neighbour . To a variety of musical accompaniments, usually cheerful, the boy witnesses a procession of bizarre occurrences with residents ignoring the door and making their precarious way in and out of their dwelling, none more so than the bride in danger of being thrown from the balcony towards her betrothed. When the boy proceeds to demonstrate that the door is actually open his advice is ignored by the good citizens. Thus Nina wittily demonstrates the failings in the Soviet, communist world at a time just before perestroika opened doors to the west and outside. The stop motion animation is the first in a trilogy of films made by this great master of Russian animation. I have the full set myself but a small price secures Masters of Russian Animation, Vol. 4 where the movie may be enjoyed in all its glory. The building with its crumbling edifice and rather grand door is a masterpiece of set design and I found the lighting extraordinary.

5 comments:

Mareeka said...

Right around 3 minutes a character tries to open the door and fails. Then 3 character together try to open the door. So it can't be that the boy shows the citizens the door is actually open. I think it's more that people will eventually accustom themselves to all sorts of ridiculous inconveniences as they go about their daily lives, as it's easier to do that than to actually change something.

Ian Lumsden said...

Having just watched the movie again I agree with your interpretation, Mareeka. I watch so many movies that the subtle touches can be missed and this is what Comments are for. Thank you and keep me on my toes.

ryan undersom said...

I've always wanted to watch that movie. I think it's a very interesting movie.

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Ian Lumsden said...

I wish I could find some more ofher work.

Anonymous said...

Not sure if you've seen this link yet but here: http://kinomusorka.ru/en/directors-director-nina-shorina.html
Think you might find some things there.