Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Krasikov's "One more year" and Eastern European women

One More Year is KILLING me. I completely empathize with the characters but MAN! I know that my immigrant experience is very much NOT typical and that for a lot of newcomers to America, life here is not so much about opportunity and collecting meaningful experiences but, rather, about SURVIVAL. But still. I need some relief.

If you need a break, take a look at these beautiful video stills from my favorite Russian film: Moscow Does Not Believe in Tears.

Now. If you did read the book do share what you thought! The female characters are magnificent, aren't they? Sooo pragmatic. Sooo practical. Sooo strong and self-sacrificing. They struck me as VERY Eastern European and I felt so drawn to them! I KNOW these women. Hi Mom. Hi Grandma. Hi Aunt Vera.

At the same time, the "American" in me couldn't help but eye-roll. Stop with the martyrdom already. All of you. ENOUGH. The fact that you can be THAT strong doesn't mean that you HAVE TO. And plus, who asked that of you anyway?!


  1. Awe. <3. Here's my take:

  2. I loved your review, Vicki! Eastern European dourness comes up a lot in the K-G household, both in reference to Bulgaria but also in reference to... well, ME. It's so embarrassing! I am a generally happy person but every once in a while I start to sulk and I just can't help myself. It is somewhat of a relief to hear that that may be in my national DNA.

    In your experience, are East Europeans dour?

  3. I just finished the book thank you for the reccomendation! I loved the line "...what was wrong with these people, with this whole city, where an ordinary smile was considered a sign of weakness".
    So true! I remember being at a Sofian bank with my Canadian friend Kim and we were waiting for our cash to be exchanged. There was an uncomfortable pause for a couple of minutes and we both gingerly (and very North American like) smiled at the teller. What proceeded next was the most painful smile done in slow motion on her side, she felt trapped in that kiosk, waiting for the cash, confronted with our smiles. It is a good example of that "Eastern European dourness". But at the same time, I do appreciate it, instead of the (sometimes) artificial Canadian cheeriness.

  4. It is my favourite Russian movie,too. :)))) and "Slujebniy Roman". whatever it is officially translated romance?

  5. Oooh. I haven't watched it! Thanks for the recommendation!

  6. It was almost the same time if I am not mistaken/same era so to speak. we had three major movies that were watched over and over...Moskva was one of them, "Work Romance" was another. the third one, in my opinion is "S Legkim Parom!" ( no idea how to translate? about sauna LOL) which had Barbra Brilska ( a gorgeous Polish actress you might know?) in it. all three are significant for Russian Soviet cinema of my childhood! Get "work romance" if you can find it!