A Russian immigrant is detained at a holding centre when she arrives in Britain with her son. As she tries to build a life for herself, she is constantly exploited.
The British tradition for social realism is alive and well in documentarist Pawel Pawlikowski’s follow-up to The Stranger. An angry indictment of current attitudes to political asylum, yet laced with humour and humanity, it is short, sharp and unerringly to the point.
Detained at Stanstead, when her British fiancé fails to show, Tanya and her son Artiom are sent to a soulless holding centre, where her only hope of avoiding deportation to Moscow lies either with an internet porn baron or the manager of an amusement arcade. With Ryszard Lenczewski’s photography managing to lens bleak beauty, this is a sobering portrait of a self-satisfied nation, where protestations of melting-pot liberalism amount to little more than soundbites.
Gripping and sobering social realism from Pawel Pawlikowski.