WHERE UNC Charlotte Center City Building (320 E. 9th Street)
ADMISSION is FREE but donations are welcome.
Not Rated; 127 min
Russia, present day, summer.
Truck driver Georgy picks up his latest load and heads off for the highway, stopping off first at home, where he avoids contact with his wife. His journey is interrupted by two traffic police at a checkpoint. When he evades their seemingly unncessary attentions and returns to his cab, he finds an old man sitting in the front seat. The man asks for a lift, and in return, tells Georgy the sobering story of his return from the German front in 1946. After the old man disappears, Georgy drives into a traffic jam on the main road. A teenage prostitute appears and offers to show him a short-cut â€“ along with her services â€“ and they end up at a village market. There, hurt by Georgy’s attempt to show her some kindness, she abandons him.
Leaving the market, Georgy continues his journey alone and ends up lost in a field. By now, night has fallen and his truck has broken down. Three tramps appear out of the darkness, planning a robbery. They invite Georgy for a meal by a roadside fire and offer him a drink. Georgy refuses alcohol and asks for directions back to the highway, but the meal ends violently and abruptly…
The first fiction film by acclaimed documentarian Sergei Loznitsa, My Joy is a mischievous, ultra-nihilistic parable of post-Communist Russia, shot by master cinematographer Oleg Mutu (The Death of Mr. Lazarescu, 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days).
“It’s suspenseful, mysterious, at times bitterly funny, consistently moving and filled with images of a Russia haunted both by ghosts and the living dead.” – Manohla Dargis, The New York Times
“In the best way, My Joy expands the notion of what narrative cinema can do and can be to harrowing effect. The film is an undeniable artistic achievement that may stick in your mind longer than you’d like it to.” – Landon Palmer, Film School Rejects
“One of the year’s must-see provocations.” – Michael Atkinson, Village Voice
“A memorable jolt of a debut” – Benjamin Mercer, The L Magazine
“The most unexpected and arresting picture in the main Cannes competition.” – Andrew O’Hehir, Salon.com
Sergey Loznitsa was born September 5th, 1964 in the city of Baranovitchi, in Belarus. At that time Belarus was part of the Soviet Union. Later Sergeyâ€™s family moved to Kiev, Ukraine, where Sergey finished high school.
In 1981 Sergey applied and was admitted to Kiev Polytechnic Institute, with the major in applied mathematic and control systems. In 1987 he graduated with a degree in engineering and mathematics.
From 1987 through 1991 Sergey was employed as a scientist at the Institute of Cybernetics. He was involved in the development of expert systems, artificial intelligence, and decision-making processes.
In addition to his main job, Sergey worked as a translator from Japanese. During that time Sergey developed a strong interest in cinematography, and in 1991 he applied to Russian State Institute of Cinematography, in Moscow. After passing a very vigorous selection process, Sergey was admitted to the Institute. He studied in the studio of Nana Dzhordzhadze.
In 1997 Sergey graduated with honors with the major in movie production and direction. From 2000 he produces works in the Studio of Documentary Films in St.Petersburg. In 2000 he was awarded â€śNipkov programâ€ť grant in Berlin.
In 2001 Sergey immigrated with his wife and two daughters to Germany. Sergey Loznitsa made three full size documentaries and eight short stories. Presently Sergey is directing several documentaries and working on new scripts. â€”loznitsa.com