Russian grab-bag floating between dark revenge comedy and light surrealistic hallucination.The indecision of which tone and theme to emphasize is one of the deepest nails in this coffin. One arm reaches for funny and the other arm for fancy, and Karen Shakhnazarov’s direction exhibits the similar cross-eyed, flip-lipped indolence. Either way leads this into obscurity, inasmuch as the comedy is lacking proper support or shape, and the dreams are completely dislocated from any progressive development or point. Anyone with an imagination, it seems, could have done a number of fun reenactments with the encyclopedic print-out of infamous cardinals or royalty who have poisoned those who stood in their way throughout the past several centuries. During the closing lines of text, there is a hinge into reality that claimed this to be based on a true story. If the names were changed to protect the innocent, I saw no such clause to prevent the embellishment of their apparent insanity. They wouldn’t look any more foolish than they already do.
With Oleg Basilashvili, Aleksandr Bashinrov and Olga Tumajkina.[Not to be bothered with.]