The Father - Opening Screening - 48th Monte-Carlo Television Festival
At the Opening Ceremony for the 2008 48th Monte-Carlo Television Festival, last Sunday, there was an Opening Screening of the film "The Father", distributed by Mentor Cinema, and HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco posed for photographs with some of the stars from the film. The Father is based upon a short story written by Andrei Platonov and is approximately 83 minutes in running time and in Russian with English subtitles. Svetlana Ivanova (standing beside Prince Albert II) delivers an excellent performance in the film playing Masha, a pregnant Russian soldier who is travelling home after the end of WWII full of worry about the devastation suffered to all of her family and the image she will generate without a husband for her child.
In transit Masha meets Captain Alexei Ivanov, played by actor Alexei Guskov, whose character is also travelling home. Soon the audience is drawn into both the drama between Alexei and Masha and later the problems that the war has brought to Alexei's family status when he finally arrives at his own home. Alexei soon finds that his home status has changed from being away and his wife Lyuba, played by Polina Kutepova (far right), has had her own lover in the town in his absence; and he has a young son, played by Vassili Prokopiev, who has learned to rule the household, and an infant daughter who doesn't acknowledge him to be her father. In the end, however, the true family bonds between Alexei and his children provide the strongest influence to his life.
Director and producer Ivan Solovov (to the right of Prince Albert II) does an excellent job of capturing the interest of the audience in the potential romance between the Captain and Masha and then later establishing the entire atmosphere of the family life back in Alexei's home town. The general impression from the assembled audience at the Monte-Carlo Screening was that The Father is an excellent film.