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Rubljovka - Road to Bliss (Rubljovka - Strasse zur Glueckseligkeit)

Rubljovka - Road to Bliss
Scene from "Rubljovka - Road to Bliss" (photo © Lichtfilm)

Rubljovka Road is the traffic artery connecting the powerhouse Moscow with the Russian outback. At all times, the region bordering on Rubljovka has had a magnetic attraction for the ruling elite classes: Tsars, dictators, presidents. Of course, also present-day head of state Putin resides here. In Putin's Russia, Rubljovka has become synonymous with wealth, social ascent and decadent lifestyles. Tell-tale signs of the past and gross excesses of Russian cut-throat capitalism have created a bizarre microcosm that does not have a parallel elsewhere in this giant empire. Nouveau riche upstarts have caused the price of property on the Rubljovka to rocket sky-high. Now the fight for the last remaining pieces of land has broken out. The last remaining huts of the poor are swept aside to make way for the palaces of the wealthy by means that could not be any more unfair or brutal. The Russian State, celebrating an imperial comeback bolstered by petrol-billions, has declared open season on the weak and poor. And hardly anyone dares to protest. No wonder Rubljovka is a strictly guarded maximum security area, where many things are hushed up and kept under wraps. In spite of grudgingly granted filming permits, the film team was constantly harassed and threatened by the Russian security service FSB, traffic police and each and every security company. Many parts were filmed with a hidden camera. Nevertheless, the film was completed.

The camera follows losers and profiteers, rich and poor, the powerful and their string puppets through their daily lives, in which the social divide has become increasingly wide. The film draws a social portrait of present-day Russia, in which Putin's "steered democracy" increasingly assumes dictatorial features.


Irene Langemann was born in the Omsk region of the Soviet Union in 1959. She studied Acting and Germanics at the Tcepkin Theater Academy in Moscow. From 1980-1990, she worked as an actress, director and theater writer in Moscow. In 1983, she began moderating and directing for Russian television. In 1986, she became a director and scene editor at the Nasch Theater in Moscow. She moved to Germany in 1990 and was an editor at Deutsche Welle TV in Cologne until 1997. Since 1997, she has been working as a freelance filmmaker. A selection of her films includes: Nirgendwo verwurzelt (1993), Die Goetter bitte ich um eine Aenderung (1994), Imperium der Traeume (1996), Auf Wiedersehen in Berlin (1997), Zwischen hier und dort (1997), Das Ende einer Odyssee (1998), Klasse(n) Klaenge (1999), Fit fuer Leben und Arbeit (2000), Russlands Wunderkinder (1998-2000), Lale Andersen: The Voice of Lili Marleen (2001), Martins\' Passion (Die Martins Passion, 2003), Ices and Oranges (2004), Vodka, Art, and Fashion (2004), Goldap - In Polish Siberia (2005), and Rubljovka (2007).
Genre Society
Category Documentary
Year of Production 2007
Director Irene Langemann
Screenplay Irene Langemann
Cinematography Maxim Tarasjugin
Kawe Vakil
Michael Langemann
Producer Wolfgang Bergmann
Production Company Lichtfilm/Cologne, in co-production with RBB, ARTE, WDR
Length 94 min
Original Version
 Russian
Subtitled Versions English, German
Sound Technology Dolby Digital
Festivals Vienna 2007, Goeteborg 2008
Awards Standard Viennale Audience Award Vienna 2007
With backing from Film- und Medienstiftung NRW

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