Synopsis by Ryan Shriver
Russian director Alexei Muradov explores the inhumanity forced upon his fellow countrymen just prior to the collapse of Soviet Communism in his 2002 debut feature film The Kite. Residing in a bleak apartment building in a small Russian town, a seemingly typical couple (Nadezhda Ozerova and Viktor Solovyov) begins their dreary daily existences with a too-typical argument about family finances. At the heart of the issue is their son (Pavel Zolotilin), who is wheelchair-bound due to a debilitating disease and requires experimental surgery that may or may not ease his condition. After breakfast, the husband leaves for work as a state executioner at the local prison, which has become just as mundane as his life at home -- despite the many despicable acts he is forced to carry out in order to support his family. The only possible escape from his soul-deadening existence is an anticipated evening flying a kite with his son. Generally respected by Russian critics, The Kite found further critical acclaim as a participating film in the Critic's Week program at the 2002 Venice Film Festival.