Throughout the film, two men are dancing together. However, physically they are in different locations in their own apartments. One of the men is an artist living in an old historical apartment in the center of Moscow; the other is an art buyer living in a modern apartment in a prestigious Moscow-City housing complex. They can be together only in the space of their imagination and dreams.
At the end of the video the slogan appears: Love is everyone’s right.
Cultural / Context information for the jury
In July 2020, Vladimir Putin changed the Russian constitution to ban same-sex marriage with an amendment that defines marriage as between a man and woman. 77% of the country’s population supported the change.
At the same time, Gay Propaganda law passed in 2013 actively functions in Russia. It criminalises representations of LGBTQIA+ community and their relationships, supposedly to protect children from being exposed to homosexuality. It has also encouraged a wave of hate crimes that continue to this day.
One year on from the constitutional change, this film was released to challenge these offensive portrayals of same-sex relationship.
By making and releasing the film we took the risk of essentially breaking the Gay Propaganda law.
This is the first Russian LGBTQIA+ film in years that actually portrays a gay relationship and the country’s first anti-homophobic project aimed at decreasing the amount of hatred towards the community.
Tell the jury anything relevant about the direction. Do not name the director.
The key idea was to use a 4:3 aspect ratio to help portray the isolation between the actors, and 2.35 aspect ratio for the black void to portray freedom and unity.
The only way for the Russian orthodox part of the audience to change their mind on the subject of same-sex love is to make them feel. For that the director created an emotional diagram that looked like this: We open our film with the dramatic feeling of two people in love being separated. The feeling of despair should evolve into a passionate personal performance where the audience falls in love with the characters. The tenderness of the couple being together gets destroyed by the awareness of this being just an illusion of freedom.