Rock Paper Grenade

ROCK.PAPER.GRENADE IS THE FILM IN COMPETITION FOR THE GENERATOR+16 SECTION.

The jury members of the Generator+16 section, inside Sala Truffaut, have watched the film in competition, ROCK.PAPER.GRENADE, directed by the Ukrainian filmmaker Iryna Tsilyk.

The jury members of the Generator+16 section, inside Sala Truffaut, have watched the film in competition, ROCK.PAPER.GRENADE, directed by the Ukrainian filmmaker Iryna Tsilyk. This title marks the director’s first feature film, inspired by the homonymous novel written by her husband, Artem Chekh. The true drama of this film lies in its subject matter: war. What was meant to be a way to talk about men who returned with serious post-traumatic disorders caused by the war in the ’90s actually speaks about sadly current issues. In particular, at the moment, the director is in Kyiv with her son, while her husband is at war fighting with the Ukrainian army. In the film ROCK.PAPER.GRENADE, it is interesting to witness the evolution of the character Tymophiy, depicted in three stages of his life: childhood, adolescence and adulthood. Set in the ’90s, the protagonist is the young Ukrainian boy, Tymophiy, living with his mother and grandmother in Ukraine, with no news about his father. The family’s life, but especially the boy’s life, takes an unexpected turn with the arrival of his grandmother’s companion, a man named Felix. A former counterintelligence officer, Felix had spent many years in the army during the war in Afghanistan. The experience of fighting and being forced to end the lives of many people led to a radical change in his life and personality. Such a consequence is not surprising, as he went from being an operator in the city’s cultural centre to wielding rifles and pulling the trigger with the sole intent of saving himself and surviving. Felix’s post-traumatic disorder, resulting from what he experienced during the war, reveals a bright, open-to-dialogue and amusing man, as he often proves to be with his adopted grandson, Tymophiy. For the boy, Felix becomes a role model, despite being seen as a person with a violent temperament. A notable example is the aggression suffered by Felix and his nephew, especially by the hands of two men. The teenager, who was initially against violence and weapons, finds himself questioning all his certainties when he is compelled to pick up a rifle from Felix’s suitcase. Among the various dualities present in the film, for example Felix’s roughness clashes with Tymophiy’s sensitivity, as he performs kind gestures that warm the heart, such as saving kittens and opening his heart for the first time to a girl.

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