«Jewish Observer»
January 2002
5762 Tevet

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"On Saturday I'm a king" is a documentary film produced by the "NTV Cinema", "AMA" company. The film director is Vladimir Dvinsky, the script is written by Vladimir Dvinsky and Vladlen Kuznetsov, the cameraman is Igor Sosenkov.

The film premiere took place in Kiev right after the first nights in Moscow, New York and Chicago. The hall of the House of Cinematographers was excessively overcrowded. It shouldn't be forgotten the audience came to see namely a documentary, not a fashionable show. Though, is there anything to be surprised at?

Feature-length and professional documentaries on our screens today are nearly a big rarity. Moreover, the authors' names speak for themselves. Vladimir Dvinsky is a clever and precise director preferring publicistic boldness.

"I am a typical Russian Jew...The first reason is that I was lucky to be born and to survive: my parents were not, by sheer luck, killed by a "Black Hundred" patrol, they escaped Hitler crematoriums, Stalin camps... Second, I am a typical Jew because I don't know the language my ancestors used to speak... I would be a complete idiot if I hadn't been asking myself and others, including God, during all my conscious life, "Why did it happen so?" Our film appeared mainly due to this reason". Such are the words with which the director begins the film "On Saturday I'm a king" as a narrator. The most painful, penetrating and touching episodes of the film are those showing the Shargorod residents. We see a group of the old men who play dominoes waiting for a lunch and recall the previous life. We see a young teacher who tries to preserve the fragments of the past by herself and creates an ethnographic museum - a gravestone to the native town. Everything is filled with the sadness of farewell, the feeling of the end.

But still, the film doesn't create the impression of irreparability. There is sadness, there is a feeling of a "leaving nature" that occurs at the end of the day. And we see the people, their relations, cultural phenomena dying down. But tomorrow the day will come again. And there will be life. Though, a different one...

Vladlen Nikolayevich Kuznetsov was born seventy years ago that can hardly be believed into. He is active and energetic; he thirsts for life and work. He seems to be able to do everything: to care about his family, to be the Secretary of the Union of Cinematographers, to show an active interest in the social and political life, to make new films.

Vladlen Kuznetsov was born December 4 in Kharkov. He spent his school and student years in Kiev. He graduated from the Kiev State University, worked as a journalist, a scriptwriter of many films produced by the studios "Kievnauchfilm", "Ukrkinokhronika" and by the Moscow studios. We can mention here, among others, "Word about bread", "Camp Dust", "Shorthand report", "Story and history", "XX century", "Intelligentsia and power".

"Den", Kiev

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