Made in Georgia on the sly with filmstock earmarked for another production, Tsabadze's first feature, a grungy yet darkly comic portrait of the bohemian underworld, was greeted with dismay by the Soviet authorities, who were nevertheless chuffed when it came away with a prize at the 1987 Locarno TV Festival. The story of a freewheeling student who bets a million cigars on the toss of a coin and subsequently finds himself on the run from the local Mafia, it's often rough at the edges technically, but presents a compelling picture of a society in the midst of falling apart. The Soviet broadcasting chief condemned the film for looking at 'a certain stratum of society with a cold pernicious, venomous atmosphere which cannot but provoke disgust, resentment and disapprobation.' Bloody students, eh?
Cast and crew