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Scene from TWELVE CHAIRS (photo © Ulrike Ottinger)

On her death bed, an old Russian aristocrat entrusts her son-in-law with a strictly guarded secret. Namely, that she had hidden all of her valuable jewelry in one of the twelve salon chairs that were taken away from her after the revolution. Her son-in-law, Ippolit Matwejewitch Worobjaninow, is a former nobleman and a dandy who is currently wasting away as a small town magistrate in charge of civil marriages. He eagerly takes up the quest to find the treasure. Meanwhile, over the years, the twelve chairs have been dispersed all over the country. However, Worobjaninow is not the only one in pursuit of the treasure. Hot on its trail are Ostap Bender, a clever and colorful conman, as well as Father Fjodor, a priest to whom the wealthy aristocrat has also confessed her secret. Thus begins a wild chase that ranges from North to South, West to East, across water and land, from the country to the city.
Genre Comedy, Road Movie
Category Feature
Year of Production 2004
Director Ulrike Ottinger
Screenplay Ulrike Ottinger
Cinematography Ulrike Ottinger
Bettina Blickwede
Ulrike Ottinger, Alexander Batenjew
Cast Olga Rawitzkaja, Boris Raev, Genadi Skarga, Georgi Delijew
Producer Ulrike Ottinger
Production Company Ulrike Ottinger Filmproduktion/Berlin
Runtime 198 min
Format 35 mm, color
Subtitled Versions German, English
Sound Technology Dolby Stereo
Festivals Berlin 2004 (Forum), Jerusalem 2004, Barcelona 2004, Mar del Plata 2005
With backing from Kulturstiftung des Bundes
German Distributor STUDIOCANAL/Berlin

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