Archives / 2008 Sundance Film Festival

Durakovo: Village of Fools

Director: Nino Kirtadze

Screenwriters: Nino Kirtadze

Institute History

  • 2008 Sundance Film Festival

Description

Orthodox Russian nationalism percolates in a castle outside Moscow, where a portly businessman-turned-guru named Mikhail Morozov presides over Durakovo, a rural hamlet known as the “village of fools.” Here Morozov is absolute ruler, overseeing a small band of young initiates who flock to the village from all over Russia to free themselves of the shackles of democracy.

Durakovo has a grand mission—to save the nation from poisonous Western influences. Some of Morozov's subjects come to him unwillingly, forced by parents fed up with their stints of rebellion. When they join the village of fools, the new residents abandon all their former rights and agree to obey their leader’s strict rules, hoping to learn subordination and enrich their spiritual lives. Three moral pillars serve as the guiding principles at Durakovo: God, tsar, and fatherland.

Filmmaker Nino Kirtadze attains unfettered access as political and religious leaders gather at the castle to meet with Morozov and dream of a glorious future where Russia is devoid of foreigners. With a keen eye for irony, Kirtadze’s camera juxtaposes Morozov and his peers romping naked in the pool and sauna while the young men who serve him toil in backbreaking labor. Purposefully restrained, yet cunningly subversive, Durakovo provides a chilling glimpse of fascist ideology on the rise.

— David Courier

Screening Details

Sundance Film Festival Awards

As you use our Online Archives, please understand that the information presented from Festivals, Labs, and other activities is taken directly from official publications from each year. While this information is limited and doesn't necessarily represent the full list of participants (e.g. actors and crew), it is the list given to us by the main film/play/project contact at the time, based on the space restrictions of our publications. Each entry in the Online Archives is meant as a historical record of a particular film, play, or project at the time of its involvement with Sundance Institute. For this reason, we can only amend an entry if a name is misspelled, or if the entry does not correctly reflect the original publication. If you have questions or comments, please email archives@sundance.org