Their paths cross unexpectedly on a tobogganing slope on New Year’s Day. It is there that the two boys meet Katerina, a teacher from their school, and her friends David and Stepan, who are on their way back from a somehow unsuccessful New Year’s party in the mountains. They all end up together in Katerina’s flat and the turn of events has it that they all spend the night there.
A muted wintry light could still be made out outside just a while ago but now, under the cover of darkness, an unsettling sense of tension passes through the group. There are other adventures than merely sledging or cartoons awaiting these two boys, who are barely more than children. As if taking part in a ritual, they are permitted to take a glimpse at the adult world. Transgression and lost innocence hang in the air, with the camera searching for traces of this fascination in the close-ups of faces. It’s as if the boys hold up a mirror to the adults, showing them their power games, seductions and yearnings, which are perhaps even more confusing and dangerous than alcohol and cigarettes. The next morning – it’s light outside again – they each go their separate ways, all of them at least one night older. [Synopsis courtesy of Berlin International Film Festival]