USA / Russia, 2011 (MIFF 2011, Documentaries)
Director: Phil Rosenthal
An attempt to export the hit US TV show Everybody Loves Raymond to Russia makes for a front row seat to a comedic culture-clash.
Everybody loves Raymond, but can the love extend to far Eastern Europe? Writer-director Phil Rosenthal, who created the hugely successful American sitcom, explores the hazards of translation as he tries to get the Russian version of the show off the ground.
The birth of Everybody Loves Kostya is beset with peculiarly Russian problems - a costume designer with a white cashmere agenda, and actors intent on finding the physical slapstick in every scene - leading to questions about the very notion of 'universal' humour. Rosenthal's wry wit guides the film through a series of Moscow misadventures, with the help of a possibly-ex-KGB chauffeur and a family who take him in for a slice of real Russian domestic 'harmony', which may not be so foreign after all.
D Phil Rosenthal P John Woldenberg L English, Russian w/ English subtitles TD HD Cam/2011