Veit Helmer wraps production of silent comedy The Bra
by Birgit Heidsiek
- The German director is making a Cinderella story in the mountains of Azerbaijan
Various secluded villages in Azerbaijan serve as the central locations for the romantic comedy The Bra (working title) by German writer-director-producer Veit Helmer (Absurdistan [+see also:
film profile], Tuvalu, Baikonur [+see also:
film profile]). Day in, day out, an ageing loner operates a cargo train that trundles through the landscape of the Caucasus Mountains. As in his first feature, Tuvalu, Helmer tells the story entirely without dialogue. The mood is conveyed by the music of French composer Cyril Morin (The Syrian Bride).
The daily journey undertaken by the train driver transforms into a playful tale driven by the search for Lady Luck and a piece of fabric. The tracks are located so close to the buildings that the residents need to take extra care with their laundry on the clothesline whenever the train passes by. Although a young orphan boy warns them with a whistle, items such as bed sheets often get caught on the train. On his last day of work, the engine driver finds a blue polka-dot bra on the locomotive when he returns to his home village. Out of loneliness and curiosity, he goes back to the village and starts to look for the owner of the blue bra. Wherever he spots petticoats hanging on a clothesline, he knocks on the doors of the housewives and housekeepers – but just like in Cinderella, only one woman can be the right one.
The leading part of the train driver is played by Miki Manojlović (Circus Columbia [+see also:
interview: Danis Tanovic
film profile], Underground). Further cast members include Denis Lavant (Holy Motors [+see also:
interview: Leos Carax
film profile], Beau Travail), Paz Vega (Spanglish, Sex and Lucia [+see also:
film profile]), Chulpan Khamatova (Good Bye Lenin! [+see also:
interview: Wolfgang Becker
film profile], Luna Papa), Maia Morgenstern (The Passion of the Christ) and Manal Issa (Parisienne [+see also:
film profile]). Produced by Veit Helmer Filmproduktion in co-production with German broadcaster NDR, The Bra will be distributed theatrically in Germany by Neue Visionen Filmverleih. The international rights are handled by Pluto Film.
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