Durakovo: Village of Fools 0+

(Durakovo, le village des fous), Nino Kirtadzé, FRA 2007, original version / Czech subtitles, 91 min

The village of Durakovo is situated not far from Moscow. Mikhail F. Morozov rules here with an iron fist at the local chateau and educates his flock of followers – young men who have lost their way and children of senior state officials – on the virtues of discipline, love of God and, above all, love of one's country. Morozov is a typical exponent of the powerful in contemporary Russia. He has connections in the highest places as well as money, influence and authority. Nino Kartadze's film, which won a directing award at Sundance, shows how the country's attempts at establishing democracy have now fallen by the wayside as it now strives to re–assert itself as a global military superpower. For many in Putin's Russia, an all–encompassing nationalism bordering on xenophobia has become a balm for Russia's aching soul. For example, this is what the children at Durakovo also learn. In the film, when Morozov names the basic pillars on which the ruling nationalists will restore the idea of a greater Russia – God, the tsar and the president, it is clear that the idea of democracy and free elections mean nothing to the ruling elite.


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