In post-Soviet Russia there is a phenomenon beyond ice fishing, matryoshkas and vodka: the garage settlement. Tin huts, inhospitable from the outside, provide a refuge for a large number of Russians – mainly men. According to their own taste and away from all rules, with ingenuity and tenacity, alternative habitats are created on just a few square meters. Scrap collector Ilya uses the garage as a production facility, Roman uses it for his quail breeding, Pavel carves skillful saint figures, and Viktor has added four underground floors to his space over the decades. Everything is here, and everything seems possible.
The garages are an expression of a retreat into the private sphere, an escape from everyday life. Behind the Arctic Circle, in a rough area where a mining company is the only employer, the garage remains the last chance for self-realization – and comes across as diverse as the dreams of its owners.
GARAGE PEOPLE will celebrate its world premiere at the Berlinale 2020 as part of the Perspektive Deutsches Kino (Perspectives on German Cinema) section.