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YOU I LOVE aka YA LYUBLU TEBYA
USA: Picture This! Entertainment
Cast: Damir Badmaev, Lubov Tolkalina, Evgeny Koryakovsky, Irina Grineva, Michael Vaganda, Yury Sherstnev, Victor Shevidov, Valentina Mankhadykova, Anatoly Mankhadykov, Nina Agapova, Michail Tarabukin, Alexandre Doulerain, Gleb Aleinikov, Ksenia Belaya, Yury Askarov, Evgeny Shevsky, Vladimir Tishko, Alexei Kim, Alexandra Shkurko, Dmitry Shirokov, Anfisa Chekhova, Natalya Arkhangelskaya, Jan Daniel, Sergey Pchela, Alissa Tanskaya, Alexandra Brazgovka, Svetlana Ratova, Evgenia Gorbunova, Regina Savinova, Alexandra Galbershtam, Marina Maksimik, Natalya Tetinova, Savr Belyakinov, Bair Ochirgoryaev, Sofia Shalkhenova, Oleg Khaibullin, Alexandr Vartanov, Egor Popov, Alexei Kondrashov, Yukhan Shkerin
Directors: Olga Stolpovskaja, Dmitry Troitsky
Language: Russian (English subtitles)
USA: 83 mins
USA Release Date: 19 November 2004 (Limited Release - New York)
This delightful Russian feature combines hilarious comedy, witty social commentary, and a sexy love story in an all-too-rare combination that is as thought-provoking as it is fun! Timofei is an ad executive in a top Russian advertising firm in Moscow. The author of successful TV marketing campaigns, he is less sure-footed as the author of his own inner life. He's great with a jingle, but his mind wanders on the job, looking for something besides "cola" to get excited about. When he meets oddball beauty Vera in the commissary of his office building, he finds something fascinating about her: a glamorous news anchorwoman, but absent-minded, quirky and a food fetishist. (Perhaps she is subject to the all-too-effective type of advertising that Timofei purveys!) Willing lunch buddies, Vera and Timofei soon spiral into a dating cycle. The affection they share mitigates the crazy pace of their professional lives, and they seem to have found a counterbalance for life's confusion in each other's eyes.
Whack! Everything changes when Timofei's car collides with young Uloomji, a young Kalmyk day worker who spends most of his time sweeping cages in the Moscow zoo. Uloomji entertains dreams of making his mark as a circus performer (indeed, he was practicing a balancing act on a fence when he fell in the path of Timofei's car.) Reviving at the scene of the accident, Uloomji realizes a new ideal upon his first sight of Timofei: to become the boyfriend of this strange, buttoned-down dreamboat. Recuperating in Timofei's well-appointed apartment, Uloomji soon regains his strength and initiates a delightfully uninhibited attack on the new object of his desire - using all the acrobatics of his chosen (circus) career to pin down his prey. Bemused by the freedom and unpredictability of this strange boy, Timofei swings in a new direction... and Uloomji's romantic dream comes true! Now Vera is on the outside looking in, but she's still just lonely enough to explore a friendship with the newly-bonded boyfriends, accompanying them on various dating misadventures. Together, the three constitute an eccentric but ultimately accepting pseudo-family. But when Uloomji's family members track him down at Timofei's apartment, their scandalized interventions threaten to bring the whole relationship asunder, and spoil a lot of fun.
This zany, fast-paced run through modern-day sexual attitudes also shows a Russia seldom seen in movies: reeling under the sugar-high of capitalistic excess, and with fissures constantly forming in monolithic social and sexual categories. Offering humor and romance in abundance, as well as winning performances, eye-popping production design and sprightly direction by Olga Stolpovskaya and Dmitry Troitsky, YOU I LOVE
is a rare delight.
A breezy comedy of manners, set in Moscow, about three strangers from very different walks of life (a female news anchor, a male ad executive and a young man who works in the zoo). These three form a fast-evolving relationship as friends and lovers, upending tradition and responding to the craziness of daily life in modern Russia.