Slava Tsukerman on PERESTROIKA

Slava Tsukerman and Sam Robards on the set of PERESTROIKA

Slava Tsukerman and Sam Robards on the set of PERESTROIKA

The plus side of not having IFC, Sundance Channel, NetFlix, VOD, etc, etc, was that when you saw an indie film, you were pretty much sure your friends saw it as well, and so it was easy to discuss the merits, or lack thereof, of any title. And, man, did we discuss the hell out of LIQUID SKY. One of the last of the true midnight movies, released in 1982, this melange of sex, drugs, flying saucers and serial clubbing — all captured through the raw, spontaneous camera of Russian emigre Slava Tsukerman — provoked heated arguments and, love it or hate, was required viewing for anyone who really cared about film.

Twenty-seven years later, Tsukerman is back and still tweaking the audience, this time with PERESTROIKA, a look at Russia immediately after the fall of the Iron Curtain, as seen through the eyes of someone who fled a decade and a half earlier. It’s got a good cast — including Sam Robards, Ally Sheedy, and F. Murray Abraham, a curious narrative style (sorta Bergmanesque, but filtered through what can only be described as a very Slavic wit), and the pleasure of becoming reacquainted with one of the formative forces of indie film.

I was happy to sit down with Slava to discuss the film.


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