Living in rural Russia, Sascha "owns" and manages an old collective farm, where his ownership was never formally registered with the district administrators. Sasha is from the city yet well-respected by his farm workers, who even tolerate his love-affair with Anya, a secretary at the local government. When the district offers him a lucrative deal for the farm Sasha accepts it at first, but eventually decides to stand up to the bureaucrats when his employees, mostly poor villiagers, convince him to stand firm. Boris Khlebnikov's A Long and Happy Life is a existential human drama which encapsulates the greed and corruption in contemporary Russia. Set against the backdrop of a town at the mercy of nature, A Long and Happy Life is a tragedy of a good man who wages a war he will never win. As the film progresses we begin to understand how truly hopeless Sasha's fight tis, with many of his own workers beginning to regret asking Sasha to stand up for them. I could see how some could lose sympathy or apathy for Sasha due to the nature in how he lashes out near the end of the film but I would argue that Sasha was always more a symbol to begin with. Sasha represents a force that stands up for the common man against the greed which bureaucracy so routinely inhabits, with Khlebnikov expressing how cynical and downright hopeless he is when it comes to something like this ever changing.
Love of all things cinema brought me here.