PORTFOLIO (Russia, 16 minutes)

Subtitles: English

Directed by: Nikita Tamarov

Written by: Nikita Tamarov

Cast: Irina Chesnokova, Maxim Bobkov

An absurdist comedy that portrays the ends to which a contractor will go to in order to maintain his reputation as a professional.



By: Maria Akay

From the name of the short film alone, the viewer has no idea on how it connects to the opening scene: a bleak road with a man happily driving a hearse. The short film seems dark, probably representing Igor's frustration throughout the whole film. Igor does what he must to get paid by his client, even if that means resurrecting the dead.

Igor's client, Irina, continues to make outlandish requests, each more out there than the last, to keep the deceased's family happy and withholding Igor's pay until he completes each request. At first, Irina's requests and Igor's reluctance into acceptance seem comical. After each subsequent request however, the running joke seems repetitive. It's not until Igor successfully brings the decreased to life (as per Irina's request) the film takes a turn for the truly funny when the two engage in an epic street fight.

By the end of the short film Igor is convinced his motivation to keep working, even though he is blackmailed with his own pay, is the attractiveness of his portfolio. Does this mirror our own society’s need to market oneself through an impressive portfolio or resume? Igor realizes the fact that he is the best in his field means nothing unless he can list it on his portfolio for the next client. Portfolio is an official selection of the New York City Independent Film Festival and will be shown at the festival on October 12-18, 2015.