Liefde is aardappelen

Life is Potatoes
Directed by: 
Liefede is aardappelen (Life is Potatoes)

© Aliona van der Horst

One day, Dutch film maker, Aliona van der Horst was given her inheritance:  6 square meters, one sixth of a small, wooden house in the Russian countryside where her mother grew up. It was as if life had handed her a card she felt forced to play. She began a journey into the past, back into the childhood of her Russian mother and her five sisters, all of whom struggled with fear, famine and war in Stalin’s Russia; experiences that left them scarred to their very soul. Accompanied by the magical animation of acclaimed Italian artist Simone Massi, unimaginable events in the Soviet past are given an extraordinary and immediate charge. Along with the stories of ordinary people living in a small farm house, the film maker tells the tale of Soviet terror, immense bravery and a fear that has never left those four walls. (Periscoop Film)



Director's statement: 

"Sometimes life deals you a card you have to play. This happened to me when Iinherited  my six square meters Russia.  It consists of a small room in a wooden house in a village close to Moscow from 1854. The house of my grandmother, my mother and her sisters.  After the dead of my aunt it is now deserted.  It will rot away if  it is left like it is. So two cousins and me have to decide what to do with it. Walking in this empty house, full of memorabilia, clothes, shoes, books about communism and religion, I suddenly realize there is so much I don't know about my Russian family. Before deciding what to do with my six square meters I need to delve into my Russian roots. This film is about trying to find out how my family of peasants lived in Soviet Russia, what they lived for, how their lives are shaped by Russian history. And how my life still resonates with it."