Director Robin Hessman’s feature documentary debut had its world premiere in competition at last year’s Sundance, and has been blazing through more than thirty festivals ever since, including New Directors/New Films, Hot Docs, Doha Tribeca, Sheffield, and Silverdocs and Full Frame, claiming awards at the last two. It’s now on the brink of its US theatrical premiere, with screenings scheduled in nearly a dozen locations through the beginning of the summer.
Having spent most of the 1990s living in Russia, Hessman brings a personal touch to this intimate portrait of a generation of Russians – the last generation to grow up behind the Iron Curtain. She spent five years crafting MY PERESTROIKA, finding her participants, shooting new interviews, and going through a wealth of archival footage – from Soviet propaganda to personal home movies of her five subjects, former classmates who now make up the new middle-class in Russian society, undreamt of in their childhood. By focusing her camera on the stories of ordinary people, Hessman gains extraordinary insight into the hopes and dreams, disappointments and disillusionment of the modern Russian.
Note: Hessman will be in attendance for the March 23 opening screening, and for selected shows through the weekend at the IFC Center.