Close Up

18 October 2019: Getting to Know the Big Wide World


Getting to Know the Big Wide World
Kira Muratova, 1979, 75 min
Russian with English subtitles
Introduced by Elena Gorfinkel

"A construction site, a symbol of newness and growth, serves as the background to an impassioned and unresolved love triangle. The drab terrain is little more than mud and cement, but the sky is a blanket of colour and light, offering the three confused lovers the glow of potential solace. Against this landscape, the sensual, poetic and mundane beauty of Muratova’s vision elevates the everyday reality of Soviet society. Starring Nina Ruslanova, Sergei Popov and Alexei Zharkov, and featuring a piano score by Valentin Silvestrov, Muratova has claimed this to be the favourite of her own films." – Melbourne Cinematheque

"The "chef d'oeuvre" of the young Muratova. The story of the construction of a tractor factory filmed in a way that was inconceivable at the time. Muratova uses a poetic cinematographic idiom to give shape to the shapeless space, the unfinished building and the unstable relationships of the characters. She makes a tender movie about the shabby and at the same time exalted completion of the building. In this lyrical film, picturesque images merge with lifelike scenes, larded with intermezzos in folksy and Socialist settings. Muratova chose a scenario about construction and the fantasy of love that ‘isn’t produced in factories’. She rewrote it, added images, lyrics, expressive caesuras and primitivistic collages, thus making a sophisticated patchwork. Just as the strength of the common people in Fellini's experimental art reinforces the lyrical backdrop of his talent, the unbridled emotionality in this film democratises Muratova's sophisticated art." – IFFR

Part of our season on Kira Muratova