The third feature film by one of the key directors of the Kazakh "new wave," 1997 -- Zapisi Rustema s Risunkami is a simple story about daily lives of young people in the big city. Rustem is lazy and indifferent compared to his older sister, and totally bored with his life. He gets fired from his job at the zoo for always being late. The 'liberated' Rustem walks aimlessly through the city, at times accompanied by his former schoolmate. One day he meets Miko, a delicate girl who is prone to fainting. Miko's neighbor, a lonely eccentric, keeps an eye on the girl. The narrative is confined within three days between August 31st and September 2nd; using Rustem's diary entries, the film interlinks four stories. Nothing much happens on the surface except that, inadvertently, Rustem finds himself in the middle of violence. The film was created as a group effort by the students of a workshop given by the director. There are no professional actors, and the dialogue is minimal. The influence of early Jarmusch is evident. 1997 -- Zapisi Rustema s Risunkami is an atmosphere film; the images of the city in the early Autumn colors and the songs of Dina Shantileiva add to the mood of youth existing without much hope for the future and little emotion for the present. The film was screened at the International Forum of New Cinema section of the 49th Berlin Film Festival, 1999.
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