Saturday, November 27

The movie “My Mother I am at home” .. When the maternal instinct becomes the only weapon

PMCs began to appear in the open in the post-Cold War era.

The film “Mama, I’m Home” by Russian director Vladimir Petukov deals with the phenomenon of Russian youth joining the ranks of security companies that carry out paid military operations in various conflict areas in the world, and its impact on Russian society in light of the support and protection that they provide. The Russian government provides them to the owners of these companies.

The film, starring Kissana Rababor and Yuri Borisov, was first shown in the Russian city of Nalchik as part of the competition program of the 78th Venice Film Festival. Official out-of-competition selection).

The famous Russian film producer Alexander Rodnyansky considers Petukov, 36, to be one of the most promising Russian directors, given his modest cinematic experience, which is limited to two feature films, the first of which was “Deep Rivers” (2018), and the second, “Mom, I’m in home” (2021).

only weapon

The film tells the story of Tonya – a mother and a truck driver in the Russian city of Kabardino – who recently received the news of the death of her son Zinka in Syria, while one of the headquarters of the Russian security company he contracted with was subjected to a violent bombardment that left his body in pieces that cannot be collected or returned home.

However, the disappearance of the body in the presence of a letter sent by Zinka to Tonya after the date of his alleged death in the paper made the mother rush to denounce and deny the news of the death and start planning a battle to discover the truth of what happened.

However, Tonya soon encounters the wall of lies and government manipulation, which was manifested during her frequent visits to police stations, army offices and other institutions that tried to contribute to concealing the truth by disrupting and scattering the search path.

After several rounds that the Russian mother fought against the parties to this corrupt system (the contractors of the military company and government agencies) in an attempt to expose their lies and hypocrisy, and when it seemed that she was close to revealing their secret to the media, they tried to silence her with financial bribes, and when she did not accept, they contributed to the expulsion of her from her work.

It seems clear to the viewer that Petukov in the movie “Mom, I’m At Home” does not seek to reveal the truth about the death of Zinka’s character, to the extent that he tries to get into the mysteries of this system, and introduces the viewer to the reality of these companies and the nature of their relationship with government agencies, and to show the amount of influence they wield in Russia By reinforcing the element of doubt as each new character enters the scene of events, and giving each event a great impetus to appear as if it is the most important event, so that the viewer discovers with the succession of events that these characters and scenes were nothing but a prelude to something bigger and a more difficult confrontation that Tonya will fight in a little while. In this labyrinth of secrets.

The director relies on the intensification of Tonya’s presence in each scene, highlighting the conflicting feelings of her through taking in the small details of the trembling of the hand, the startle of the eyes or the looks of brokenness that are immediately followed by the defiant looks, and other reactions and contradictory details that are in harmony with the instinct of motherhood and its fierceness in situations such as: Tonya goes through it, and Tonya’s struggles with the officers and officials contribute to dramatizing the film, accelerating the pace of the show, and keeping the viewer in a state of constant anticipation for what is to come.

Mercenaries.. the open secret

Returning to the events of the film, we find that the men of the system that Tonya is confronting are fed up with her insistence on revealing the truth despite all they have done, so they decided to send to her a young boy carrying Zinka’s full identification papers and claiming to be her son, and apparently everyone is from neighbors and friends. They had colluded with this deception, Tonya did not suspect for a moment that that boy was not her son and that she had to continue searching for Zinka. What was that alleged son but to stand in the way of her attempts, by resorting to various means, including locking her in the house and using physical violence to prevent her from Exit.

With the progress of events and the increasing pain of Tonya and her insistence on knowing the fate of her missing son in Syria, the boy (who is assigned the task of disabling her) finds himself biased towards her cause; He turns from a hindrance to an assistant in her war against that system and in her quest to find her son, or at least his remains.

Russian director Vladimir Petukov (networking sites)

“It is the story of a mother’s anger, despair and grief over the death of her son, a story that is known all over the world, and what we wanted was to highlight this struggle in the context of the great taboo of the subject of Russian mercenaries,” Petukov says of his film.

Hence, the viewer can explain Petukov’s choice of the mother’s personality to play this role in revealing and talking about the biggest societal and political taboos in Russia, represented by the unrecognized Russian youth victims of Russian military companies. Only the mother is ready to face harm, extortion, and refrain from bribery for the sake of her son.

Describing his impression of the film, the producer of the work, Alexandre Rudnanisky, says to the newspaper The Guardian “Everyone knows that mercenary groups exist, it’s an open secret. However, they are not identified, and that leaves our heroine, Tonya, fighting alone.”

Although the film is not an “in-depth study of mercenaries” according to Rodniansky, it was able to shed light on that issue whose impact goes beyond the boundaries of Russian society to other societies that have suffered from the actions of these companies, such as the Syrian and Libyan society.

Petukov indicated that the story of the film was inspired by a number of reports about members of mercenary families looking for their children; As these reports contributed to the incorporation of some real stories in the folds of the film.

The Wagner Group is one of the most prominent private military companies in Russia, as it has fought military battles in many countries in the world, such as Ukraine, Syria and Libya.

While the Guardian newspaper revealed, in a report It goes back to February 2018, that most of the Russian victims who died in an American bombing in Syria belonged to the Wagner Company, which is run by a contractor close to the Kremlin, as the Kremlin resorted to employing in the Syrian war to reduce official military losses in the ranks of the Russian army.

Russian journalist Peter Sauer says in a newspaper: The Guardian Women who lose their husbands or children have a similar fate to Tonya, the heroine of the film, as these companies offer them money as compensation, provided they do not accept contact with the media.

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