“Petrovs in the Flu” is a film whose real meaning may not be understood the first time. The reason is that the main events told in it are so phantasmagoric that it is unrealistic to imagine that they actually exist. Due to the many fantastic, absurd techniques, the real meaning of the film is not so easy to unravel.
It is difficult to do this not only for a simple viewer, but also for critics, since the film made an indelible impression on the jury members of film competitions in Venice and Cannes. The film begins with New Year’s Eve in a small town. This becomes the time of the awakening of evil and summing up, which throughout the film seems to be summed up not only by people, but also by evil itself. When the first Petrov appears in the flu, his whole appearance indicates that it is impossible to approach him if you do not want to get infected yourself.
However, in the world shown in the film, there are no personal boundaries, and everyone climbs to this man. He becomes a witness to unexpected events, and later a direct participant in them. Everything about this movie is weird.
The librarian here is able to disperse the poetry circle, using the techniques of martial arts. The further the viewer plunges into the film, the more unexpected hyperbole appears in it. Everything that is possible is mixed here – murders in the kitchen during political disputes, aliens.
When a film hits the Russian box office, it takes on a new meaning. For the Russian audience, there is no other way now: the more absurd details, the better. Everything around now has a high temperature (literally and figuratively) and no one wants to respect the boundaries, both state and personal.
At the same time, it is too late to be treated, but you can take advantage of the opportunities that the altered consciousness gives and try to see a logical message in delirium. Experts believe that the most poignant and humane storyline of this film is the hero’s memories of his Soviet childhood, the matinee and how his parents treated each other despite everything that awaited them outside.
Due to the fact that the scenes in the memories of the hero’s childhood are given in the first person, the author of the film gets the opportunity to completely erase the line between the viewer and the characters, forcing the viewer to feel the tenderness, kindness of these episodes, which, however, quickly becomes a nightmare. The phantasmagoria continues, childhood becomes a curse, and the past swallows the future without choking.
However, there is not much real benefit from festival cinema: it cannot cure people of the vices imposed on them by society, and as a result serves as a handkerchief.
It’s hard to see anything specific here. Part of the audience calls this film melancholy, another part may consider that the main meaning of the film lies in condemning the vices of modern society and opening the viewer’s eyes to how everyone behaves now affects their past and future. However, the author of the film himself confirms that everything that is shown in it can no longer be used to cure a person from delirium.
Remarkably, nothing that was shown by the author on the screen reflects the real situation of Serebrennikov and life is still gloomier than the events that were shown in the film.
How the local protagonist changes depends on what kind of space surrounds him. It does not change from the inside, but changes under the yoke of external circumstances, which is why it is not interesting to the audience. Petrov himself is an outdated character, whose imagination should surprise and open the gates to all insights, but he is constantly late and rushes after the rushing Russia, which the director adores.
Russia is everywhere. There are not many successful revelations in the tape, and in general the film failed, it is fragmentary and does not carry much meaning. The only thing that can be said about the content that the director put into it is that here one can clearly see an attempt to show that modern people, being in a feverish delirium, destroy themselves and everything that is around them, more and more often weaving in unrealistic details. into your reality.