St. Petersburg at the beginning of the 20th century. The handsome and secretive Johann specializes in the fabrication of erotic photographs depicting the floggings of bare-bottomed women. Johann, his assistants and his photographic creations gradually penetrate the peaceful households of two upper class Russian families. The film is a haunting melodrama of hidden passions and sadomasochistic urges, a bizarre tale in which manipulation and revenge rule amidst the charm, innocence and perversion of days gone by.
Festivals and Awards:
25 festival selections, 10 awards
Cannes (Director’s Fortnight), Karlovy Vary , Montreal , Pusan, Sao Paolo , Haifa , Chicago , London , Hong Kong, Istanbul, Sochi – Special Prize, ST.Petersburg –Best Film