Schastlivye Dni (1991)

Run Time - 86 min.  |   Countries - Russia   |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Synopsis by Clarke Fountain

In this dark, slow-paced and enigmatic film, the title Schastlivye Dni (Happy Days) is definitely a bit on the ironic side. The story begins when a young man with a head injury is released from the hospital and begins searching modern-day St. Petersburg for a room or a place to stay. His subsequent experiences strengthen his already strong misanthropic bent. The first place he finds is physically unwelcoming, though his landlady seems to have the hots for him. Perhaps fortunately, the landlady's boyfriend soon kicks him out. He finds a number of rooms with assorted eccentric characters and situations but then winds up sleeping in a cemetery. There, he is found by an elfin girl who insists that he live with her. Since she is a prostitute, this means that he must often spend whole nights listening to her entertain clients in the next room. Soon the frail-seeming prostitute has a baby, which she calls "theirs" and (for reasons which are never explained) at that point she kicks the young man out into the streets again.