MIL OSI Translation. Region: Russian Federation –
We eat pies in front of the Central Department Store, walk along Kalinin Avenue and examine the posters at the main entrance to Gorky Park.
The musical comedy “Carnival” was released on Soviet screens in February 1982 and became one of the leaders in distribution. The recognized comedy master Eldar Ryazanov praised Tatyana Lioznova’s film and admitted that he was jealous of his colleague. And the performer of the main role, Irina Muravyova, was named the best actress of the year by the readers of “Soviet Screen”.
The film about how her naive young heroine sets out to conquer Moscow is interesting to watch today. And not least for local lore considerations: the film contains many scenes shot on the streets, which in the early 1980s looked completely different from what they are today.
Many were surprised that the creator of the large-scale drama about Soviet intelligence officers “Seventeen Moments of Spring” suddenly decided to shoot a musical comedy. The story of a girl who goes to Moscow to become an artist, but suffers a fiasco, Lioznova called in many ways autobiographical. It would seem that provincial Nina Solomatina, who was not admitted to a theater university “because of her dialect” and a native Muscovite and “iron lady” of Soviet cinema, Tatyana Lioznova, could have in common? It turns out that there is a similarity: Lioznova was expelled from VGIK “due to a lack of life experience” and she had to fight for the right to study further, and later, during a period of small films, she was fired from the Gorky Film Studio. For a long time, Lioznova, like the heroine of “Carnival”, took on a variety of side jobs.
Several actors – Irina Muravyova, Yuri Yakovlev and Klara Luchko – were approved by the director practically without samples. They starred with Lioznova in the previous film, the production drama “We, the undersigned.” The most difficult thing was for Irina Muravyova – and not only because the 32-year-old actress had to play a high school student. Lioznova wanted Muravyova to perform all the dance numbers herself. The actress studied roller skating for several months, at first she was covered in bruises, but still she mastered this difficult task. The choreography in the film was done by the Rhythms of the Planet ensemble. Its artistic director Boris Sankin was amazed at how quickly Muravyova learned the most difficult steps and even some tricks. But the actress was not allowed to sing, despite her good voice and hearing. The songs in the picture are performed by Zhanna Rozhdestvenskaya. All of them, especially “Call Me, Call”, became hits overnight. The music for the film was written by Maxim Dunaevsky.
Okhansk – Kaluga – Moscow
The film was filmed at the Gorky Film Studio, but there were also many outdoor filming. The scenes in Nina Okhansk’s hometown were filmed in Kaluga, the rest in the capital. In 1981, the spirit of the Olympics was still felt in Moscow: well-groomed clean streets, high hopes for the future and youth inspired by the style of guests from the West.
Despite the fact that Nina’s story begins in Okhansk, the first shots are from Moscow: a fisherman on the Moskvoretskaya embankment, the Kremlin towers, the Bolshoi Moskvoretsky bridge, Gorky Park. And at the entrance to the park, there is a mysterious poster that invites Irina Muravyova to perform in the green theater. Yes, yes, Irina Muravyova, not Nina Solomatina.
Next time we get to Moscow together with Nina – to the Kurskiy railway station. The square in front of the station has not yet been built up: “Atrium” will appear here only 20 years later.
“The place of the“ Atrium ”was occupied by a taxi rank. In the background, the development along the Garden Ring is visible, including a post-constructivist-style house at the corner of the Garden Ring and Kursk Railway Station Square. There you can see the red telephone booths typical of the 1970s – 1980s, ”says Tatyana Vorontsova, Moscow expert, tour guide.
Strictly speaking, trains from the real Okhansk arrive at Kazansky, and not at the Kursk railway station, but let’s not quibble. Nina meets Karma, a gypsy who will shelter her for a while and become the only Moscow friend. Together they ride a taxi through the wide streets past the Bolshoi Theater. By the way, other heroes of Lioznova, Nyura and Sasha from Three Poplars on Plyushchikha, were passing here in another taxi. Meanwhile, Nina and Karma arrive in a sleeping area – either in Chertanovo, or in Novogireevo. It’s difficult to say, because the scene in which Nina runs out into the street in the morning in search of Karma was also filmed in Kaluga, apparently, it was more convenient for the shooting schedule.
Moscow makes a great impression on Nina. “Your city is so beautiful! Just like a foreigner! ” – the girl admires, walking arm in arm with her father (Yuri Yakovlev) along Novy Arbat (then – Kalinin Avenue). At that time, it was not only called, but also looked completely different.
“On the side where Nina and her dad walk, there are book houses and two-story shops. It was planned differently, lawns were placed differently, there were no parking lots. It was a typical pedestrian zone for Moscow: lawns, trees, benches, and a roadway nearby. Of course, most of the names of shops and restaurants have changed, but some can still be found today. For example, the Moskvichka store. Or “Valdai” – then it was a cafeteria, and now there is a shopping center in this building. Also, the most famous restaurant of Kalinin Avenue at that time – the Arbat restaurant – is captured in the film, ”says Tatiana Vorontsova.
And with her beloved Nikita (Alexander Abdulov), the heroine walks along Sadovaya-Triumfalnaya, here she tries to call her father from a telephone booth and cannot tear herself away from the poster with a teddy bear on rollers (which, as we remember, she will have to replace in one of the funniest scenes of the film). The phone is busy, and Nina and Nikita go there on foot (and then, having found out that the move has begun, they help to carry things). They cut the way to the metro through the roof of house 22/31, on which there was a cafe at that time. True, the heroes are in a hurry to Malaya Dmitrovka (then – Chekhov Street); why it was necessary to mention the metro remains a question.
“I haven’t identified the yard where the Solomatins’s belongings are taken out,” says Tatiana Vorontsova. – We even asked local residents. We found people who lived there even before the settlement of communal apartments, they say that something is similar, but there are differences. These quarters are now very much rebuilt. Perhaps this scene was filmed in Kaluga at all. “
The relationship between Nikita and Nina will not work out, but they will meet again by pure chance. When the heroine gets a job at the Zarya good services bureau, Nikita’s family will hire her to help with the housework. It is interesting that they summon Nina to Bolshaya Ordynka, but the scene in which Nikita runs out of the house after Nina was filmed in the vicinity of Bryusov Lane.
In the film, you can see the elegant evening capital, through which Nina strolls with Nikolai Remizov (Alexander Mikhailov), whom the heroine also meets thanks to her work at Zarya. Part of the shooting took place before the New Year, the city was decorated for the holiday. In the frame, the Moscow department store shimmers with multi-colored lights, and right there the heroes get to the Central Department Store, where they are eating hot cakes with such appetite.
“You can see the characteristic windows of the Central Department Store. And before that we are shown the Moscow department store decorated with New Year’s decorations. This is a winter shoot, so all the decorations are real. This is a very typical lighting design for that period, many viewers remember such pictures from childhood very well, ”notes Tatiana Vorontsova.
Then the heroes find themselves on the Saltykovsky bridge across the Yauza, where they fall and slide very comically. And the school where Nina spends the night and which, thanks to the installation, seems to be located very close to this bridge, is actually located on Sadovnicheskaya embankment. This is School No. 518 and is easily recognizable by its wide staircase and characteristic round windows next to the entrance. The building was built in 1935.
Nina will look out of the school window at sad Remizov, but will not try her luck in love again, but will go to her hometown to celebrate the New Year with her mother. At the very end of the film, we see Nina in the same image as on the poster from the first shots – with a short haircut and an elegant dress. She sings from the stage in a crowded hall the song “Thank you, life.” And the audience will only have to guess: are these just Nina’s dreams or did she still return to Moscow and become an artist?
EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and or sentence structure not be perfect.