Russian Snark (image 1)

Stephen Sinclair's directorial debut was inspired by the true story of a Russian couple who floated to New Zealand in a converted lifeboat.

Screened as part of NZIFF 2010

Russian Snark 2010

Directed by Stephen Sinclair

Screenwriter Stephen Sinclair (Braindead) turns writer/director with this bittersweet comedy about a couple of refugee artists from Russia (Stephen Papps, Elena Stejko) getting to grips with life in Auckland.

New Zealand In English and Russian with English subtitles
85 minutes Colour and B&W / DigiBeta

Director, Screenplay

Producer

Liz DiFiore

Photography

Steve Latty

Editor

Wayne Cook

Production designer

Lyn Bergquist

Costume designer

Cathy Pope

Music

David Long
,
Stephen Gallagher

With

Elena Stejko (Nadia)
,
Stephen Papps (Misha)
,
Stephanie Tauevihi (Roseanne)
,
Peter Rowley (Neville)
,
Gary Volk (Nikolai)
,
Greg Johnson (chicken farmer)

World Premiere

SkyCity Theatre, 20 July 2010

Elsewhere

Screenwriter Stephen Sinclair turns writer/director with this bittersweet comedy about two refugee artists from Russia getting to grips with life in the South Pacific. The unworldly Misha and his vivacious wife Nadia leave their homeland in search of peace of mind and aesthetic freedom, landing like hopeful aliens in contemporary Auckland. Misha heads to the beach and immerses himself in experimental filmmaking, framing luminous B&W images of naked bodies on rocky foreshores. Nadia adjusts to her shiny new environment more pragmatically, but life as Misha’s muse, model and breadwinner takes its toll. Stephen Papps (speaking Russian!) charms and vexes as the soulful man-child, while Elena Stejko brings a glowing blonde vitality to her every scene. Stephanie Tauevihi provides a sweet taste of Kiwi, as the unhappily separated PI neighbour who reaches out to Misha at his most forlorn, and brings him gently back to earth. — BG