A Frenchman

Andrei Smirnov

IFFR 2020

The Tyger Burns

  • 128'
  • Russia
  • 2019

By the end of the 1970s, Andrei Smirnov had had enough. One of the best and brightest auteurs to emerge from the Soviet 1960s couldn't stand constant harassment from the authorities anymore, and quit cinema for good. At least as a director; he stuck around as a screenwriter and actor. But then, after 32 years, he returned with Žila-byla odna baba (2011). Now A Frenchman suggests he's back to stay, and will continue directing.

A Frenchman, the story of a French exchange student's adventures in late 1950s Moscow, makes us painfully aware what a formidable cinematic mind and soul Smirnov has: discrete, educated, good-humoured, politically poignant while never dogmatic – the kind of public intellectual we perhaps need these days more than ever. Watching this film is like looking at a lost world, in more ways than one.

Director
Andrei Smirnov
Premiere
International premiere
Country of production
Russia
Production Year
2019
Festival Edition
IFFR 2020
Length
128'
Medium
DCP
Original title
Frantsuz
Language
Russian
Producers
Andrei Smirnov, Elena Smirnova
Production Company
Marmot Film
Sales
All Media Company
Screenplay
Andrei Smirnov
Cinematography
Yury Shaygardanov
Editor
Alla Urazbaeva
Production Design
Vladimir Gudilin
Sound Design
Oleg Tatarinov
Cast
Antoine Rival, Evgeniya Obraztsova, Evgeniy Tkachuk, Alexander Baluev