A Ukrainian woman named Rita arrives in Petersburg to become a well-paid surrogate mother for a gay couple because she needs a large sum of money to pay for her daughter’s leukemia treatments. With admirable tenacity, the 30-something widow confronts the numerous complications which fate capriciously places in her path. Igor Voloshin’s latest feature film confirms his reputation as the least predictable filmmaker of his generation. After the postmodern collage of orgiastic images he presented in I Am (screened at last year’s KVIFF), Voloshin here investigates life in Russia via classic melodrama. But beyond merely trying to touch us with the story of a mother fighting to save her daughter’s life, the director is interested in probing the state of mind of a woman caught in the unwelcoming environment of modern-day Russia. Her dogged determination is her only tool for achieving a goal for which she is willing to do anything. In implementing his vision, Voloshin relied on his star, Olga Simonova, whose uncommon performance highlights the originality of a generic scenario as seen through the filter of realism.