28th Ji.hlava International Documentary Film Festival

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The Foundation Pit
The Foundation Pit
The Foundation Pit
The Foundation Pit
The Foundation Pit

The Foundation Pit

director: Andrey Gryazev
original title: Kotlovan
country: Russia
year: 2020
running time: 71 min.


In 1930, Andrei Platonov completed his novel entitled The Foundation Pit, which explored the living dystopia of the Soviet regime as it began to lose meaning for the country’s people. Just as the workers in prose begin to question the world around them and cease to understand the meaning of their work, which eats away at their physical and mental wellbeing, many Russians today are expressing feelings of disillusionment with the current regime through posts uploaded on YouTube. When all official channels of communication are under the watchful eye of government authorities, the litany directed towards President Vladimir Putin can only be posted on the internet. And together they consist of a remarkable, found-footage fresco of the lives of the citizens of modern-day Russia, often living in poverty and helpless on the back of official propaganda.


“It's hard to tell the exact amount of footage, but it's around 80-90 hours of live recordings. Some videos lasted less than a minute, others went up to 10-20 minutes. In the end there were thousands of messages.” A. Gryazev

Q&A with the director of The Foundation Pit Andrey Gryazev:


Andrei Gryazev (1982) has a figure skating career under his belt. He studied theatre directing at the University of Moscow and gained world fame for his documentary film Tomorrow (2012), which was presented at the Jihlava Festival and explores the Voina (War) Art Movement, which “declared war on Putin's Russia" and is known for its radical, political performance art.

more about film

director: Andrey Gryazev
producer: Andrey Gryazev
editing: Andrey Gryazev
Ministerstvo kultury
Fond kinematografie
Město Jihlava
Kraj Vysočina
Creative Europe Media
Česká televize
Český rozhlas