“Compartment no. 6 », an actor’s improvisation due to the unpredictability of reality (grade 8) – Corriere.it

“Compartment no. 6 », an actor’s improvisation due to the unpredictability of reality (grade 8) – Corriere.it
“Compartment no. 6 », an actor’s improvisation due to the unpredictability of reality (grade 8) – Corriere.it
from Paolo Mereghetti

Finnish director Juho Kuosmanen invites you to indulge in the pleasure of viewing

In the end, it almost seems like the story slips off your fingers. There is also no danger of the spoiler: a Finnish student and a Russian worker share the compartment on the train from Moscow to Murmansk. That’s all. But what the “plot” cannot say (very loosely based on the novel of the same name by Rosa Liskom, translated into Italian a few years by Iperborea) is the pleasure of being in front of real cinema, ready to surprise you at every shot, capable of erasing in less than two hours any useless controversy on serial narrative. “Compartment no. 6 “ some Finnish Juho Kuosmanen (already appreciated for “The True Story of Olli Mäki”), awarded in Cannes with the Grand Jury Prize, it is an invitation to abandon oneself to the pleasure of viewing, to that flow of images that know how to conquer and kidnap, capable of transmitting the pleasure of “making films”.

And the beauty is that, as often happens, extraordinary things are not needed, special effects or a large array of means: the ability – which has become rare, alas – is enough knowing how to use the power of images. Here almost in its primitive stage: a camera glued to the two protagonists, ready to record every nuance of their faces and every move of their bodies. Every heartbeat of life that only true cinema can capture and give back. She is Laura (Seidi Haarla) Finnish student who came to Moscow to study archeology, who rented a room from Irina (Dinara Drukarova) and became her lover. We discover it in the very first scenes, during a party with friends, while the camera wanders among the guests. When she stops it is to introduce us to Laura and her relationship with the landlady, but above all to make us understand why she will soon take the train to Murmanks: she wants to see the petroglyphs (engravings on the rock of primitive peoples) that Irina very much ama and the two women have decided to admire them live, thus embarking on a kind of personal journey of love.

But work commitments block Irina in Moscow and Laura, not very happy, gets on the train alone, discovering that she has to share the compartment with a young man with a rough and very quick manner. He is Ljoha (Yuri Borisov), a worker who is going to work in the mines of the Kola Peninsula, near Murmansk, and who does not hide his rather vulgar and decisive ways. At first, coexistence seems impossible. Laura also tries to change the compartment but the money she hands out to the supervisor is evidently few and she has to resign herself. And yet, Ljoha’s manner hides, under his urban reactions, their rough kindness, a little polite attention to women whom he would especially like to sprinkle with vodka and who, however, will gradually be able to make it understood, to the point of establishing a relationship close to the ‘friendship. And that once you arrive at your destination it will take an unexpected turn, in its beginning but above all in its conclusion.

But it is not so much what happens that is important as much as we are told. Kuosmanen’s camera (who wanted to shoot on film, to restore a depth to the image that digital tends to cancel) knows how to convey the absolute gratuitousness of life, the unpredictability not of chance but of reality. And he finds it precisely because there is no narrative line that forces the characters to make precise (and pre-determined) choices. Rather, the performance of the film seems to rely on occasionality, almost a kind of acting jam session. Because the choices of direction can only rely on a couple of actors of extraordinary skill. If Borisov, with that contagious smile that he cannot fail to remember Belmondo, is now an established star of Russian cinema (he was also seen in Venice, starring this year in “Captain Volkonogov escaped” by Merkulova and Chupov and ” Mom, I’m at home “by Bitokov), Seida Haarla is almost a rookie, but she has a contagious strength, with her somewhat brazen shyness and that only apparently scrambled beauty. A pair of authentic champions.

November 28, 2021 (change November 28, 2021 | 21:13)


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