Marta Pulk (Estonia)
Paul Piik dla Kinoteater Estonia, 2019
January 31, 2020
Zbigniew Raszewski Theater Institute
1 h 46 min.
Estonian with Polish subtitles
After the screening at the Zbigniew Raszewski Theater Institute around 9:45 p.m. a meeting with Alissija-Elisabet Jevtjukova will take place.
About the film
Estonia is crazy about theatre. In October 2017 a job ad for a person who has never been to theatre is published in the media. The job is to watch and review each and every Estonian theatre production of 2018. Out of 450 job applicants, a 21-year-old girl named Alissija is hired. She lives in a small town, was born in a Russian-speaking family and knows nothing about performing arts, actors, and she’s never been to a theatre. To make the job logistically possible, she has to move to Tallinn. Months pass and there are shows that inspire her and many more that bring despair. As her world view starts to expand, Alissija has to face the traumas of her past to redefine herself and her future to make it worth surviving for. By putting the main character through 224 shows in 365 days, this film serves as a true coming of age story, testing the human limit of consuming culture and asking whether art has the power to change a life.
“In Alissiya the director gains an equal partner in the creative process – the girl has an excellent feel for the camera, she can find herself in a specific documentary form, suspended between authenticity and playing herself. Her self-awareness, developed in the course of the project, also gives her the ability to enter into a dialogue with the director, to escape the role of the filmed character. At times we forget that we are watching a documentary and that there is any barrier between us and the events – we become part of the cognitive process of the filmmakers and the protagonist. So the question perversely returns: what is theater? For Alysia it has become a space of liberation, a potential for discovering and reconstructing her identity.”
Tomasz Raczkowski “A Dramatic Year,” Didaskalia No. 160, December 2020