DMovies - Your platform for thought-provoking cinema

Golden Voices

Director - Evgeny Ruman - 2019

"Filthy genius movie"
Two elderly Russian dubbers move to Israel following the demise of the Soviet Union, where they have to contend with language and cultural barriers - live from the Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival

QUICK SNAP: LIVE FROM THE TALLINN BLACK NIGHTS FILM FESTIVAL

It’s 1990. Sicty-two-year-old Raya (Maria Belkin) and her husband Victor (Vladimir Friedman) have just migrated to Israel, leaving behind their home nation and decades of dubbing foreign films into Russian for Soviet audiences. They have to grapple with a number of novel challenges: finding a job, paying rent, filling out paperwork and living with the constant fear of a chemical attack (it was of the year the First Gulf War). They also have to learn Hebrew from scratch, a language entirely foreign to the, despite their Jewish heritage.

Due to her impressive vocal skills – she can switch from one voice to another effortlessly – Raya quickly lands a well-paid job as a… telephone sex worker. She must entertain and tickle the libido of Sergey, Serge and many other lonely males at the other end of the line. Her husband – who’s blithely unaware of the real nature of his wife’s new occupation – also leverages his past work experiences. He finds work as a dubber in the video shop catering for Russian speakers. The trade is entirely illegal. Videos are captured with a hidden camera inside in the movie theatre, and Victor has to assist on every step of the operation (not just the dubbing bit).

These various pressures and changes take their toll on Raya and Victor’s marriage, and their once solid relationship begins to collapse. A brand new love grows in the most unlikely of places, but could it also blossom? Golden Voices has some ingredients an old-age romcom, yet it’s never mawkish and implausible. In fact, it’s perfectly relatable and credible – whatever your age, religion and nationality. Belkin is beyond magnificent with her large pearly eyes and expressive lips. She combines an exuberant personality with a quiet and yet assertive joie-de-vivre. She’s delicious to watch. Friedman is also very convincing as the devoted husband and cinephile.

Raya is seeking a sense of freshness and adventure, some sort of personal rebirth. She can act and sound 22 years of age whenever she wishes. There’s a real sense of tenderness in her strength. She is a fascinating artist and human being.

This 88-minute-long Israeli movie is a also a nostalgic tribute to the seventh art. Fellini is repeatedly referenced through the movie, particularly 8 1/2 (1962) and The Voice of the Moon, which was in cinemas in the year our story takes place. The movie theatre is a place for redemption and reconciliation, the final sequence reveals. Golden Voices is also a hilarious movie. The awkward sex phone sequences will have your bursting out with laughter. The movie even manages to find both humour and warmth in a possible chemical attack.

Director Evgeny Ruman and cinematographer Ziv Berkovich joined forces in order to write the fascinating screenplay based on their very own childhood experiences upon arriving in Israel in the year of 1990. Their parents worked as dubbers in the Soviet Union prior to immigration.

Golden Voices has just premiered in Competition at the 23rd Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival. A strong contender for the event’s top prize. Our editor Victor Fraga is covering the event live, as a special guest.



"Filthy genius movie"

By Victor Fraga - 24-11-2019

By Victor Fraga - 24-11-2019

Victor Fraga is a Brazilian born and London-based writer with more than 15 years of involv...

DMovies Poll

Are the Oscars dirty enough for DMovies?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Most Read

Just a few years back, finding a film [Read More...]
Forget Friday the 13th, Paranormal Activity and the [Read More...]
A lot of British people would rather forget [Read More...]
Pigs might fly. And so Brexit might happen. [Read More...]
Holidaying in Cambodia with Isaac (Ross McCall), Ben [Read More...]
QUICK SNAP: LIVE FROM CANNES A small family [Read More...]

Read More

Jojo Rabbit

Taika Waititi
2019

Jack Hawkins - 08-12-2019

Taika Waititi's offbeat style of humour fails to skewer Fascism in this lamentably weak satire of Adolf Hitler and the Nazi state - in cinemas Wednesday, January 4th [Read More...]

The Kingmaker

Lauren Greenfield
2019

Redmond Bacon - 07-12-2019

Extraordinary profile of Imelda Marcos, dubbed the "Marie Antoinette" of the Philippines due to her extravagant plundered wealth, is in cinemas on Friday, November 13th [Read More...]

Film should brighten up our imminent dark future!

 

Steve Naish - 07-12-2019

Our writer Steve Naish argues that we might soon succumb to destruction not dissimilar to what we saw in disaster movies, and cinema could become a powerful tool for betterment and reconstruction [Read More...]

Facebook Comment

Website Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *