Peculiarities of the National Hunt

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Peculiarities of the National Hunt
VHS cover
Directed by Aleksandr Rogozhkin
Produced byAleksandr Golutva
Written byAleksandr Rogozhkin
Starring Aleksei Buldakov
Viktor Bychkov
Sergey Gusinsky
Semen Strugachev
Sergey Russkin
Sergey Kupryanov
Ville Haapasalo
Music by Vladimir Panchenko
CinematographyAndrei Zhegalov
Edited byTamara Denisova
Distributed by Lenfilm
Release date
  • 1995 (1995)
Running time
94 minutes
Country Russia
LanguageRussian, English, Finnish, German

Peculiarities of the National Hunt (Russian : Особенности национальной охоты, translit.  Osobennosti natsionalnoy okhoty) is a 1995 Russian comedy film. As soon as it was released in 1995 it became a nationwide success in Russia, the leader at the Russian box office. It won the Nika Award and Kinotavr awards. It was followed by several other "Peculiarities..." films. [1]

Russian language East Slavic language

Russian is an East Slavic language, which is official in the Russian Federation, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, as well as being widely used throughout Eastern Europe, the Baltic states, the Caucasus and Central Asia. It was the de facto language of the Soviet Union until its dissolution on 25 December 1991. Although, nowadays, nearly three decades after the breakup of the Soviet Union, Russian is used in official capacity or in public life in all the post-Soviet nation-states, as well as in Israel and Mongolia, the rise of state-specific varieties of this language tends to be strongly denied in Russia, in line with the Russian World ideology.

Romanization of Russian Romanization of the Russian alphabet

Romanization of Russian is the process of transliterating the Russian language from the Cyrillic script into the Latin script.

Comedy is a genre of film in which the main emphasis is on humour. These films are designed to make the audience laugh through amusement and most often work by exaggerating characteristics for humorous effect. Films in this style traditionally have a happy ending. One of the oldest genres in film, some of the very first silent movies were comedies, as slapstick comedy often relies on visual depictions, without requiring sound. When sound films became more prevalent during the 1920s, comedy films took another swing, as laughter could result from burlesque situations but also dialogue.



A young Finn, Raivo (Ville Haapasalo), studying Russian manners and traditions, convinces his friend Zhenya [Eugene] (Sergey Kupriyanov) to help him participate in a real hunt in order to better familiarize himself with its peculiarities. They band together with a company led by an ex-army general (Alexey Buldakov) and set off to a distant cordon in the woods, taking with them several cases of vodka.

Ville Haapasalo Finnish actor

Ville Juhana Haapasalo is a Finnish stage and film actor who has worked in Finland and Russia. His acting career started in 1995, after finishing his studies in St. Petersburg. In 2003, he was honored with the State Prize of the Russian Federation for his role of Veikko in the film The Cuckoo directed by Aleksandr Rogozhkin.

Vodka alcoholic distilled beverage

Vodka is a clear distilled alcoholic beverage originating from Poland and Russia, composed primarily of water and ethanol, but sometimes with traces of impurities and flavorings. Traditionally, it is made by distilling the liquid from cereal grains or potatoes that have been fermented, though some modern brands, such as Ciroc, CooranBong, and Bombora, use fruits or sugar as the base.

Waiting for them at the cordon is an eccentric huntsman, Kuzmich (Viktor Bychkov), who occupies himself with meditation and Japanese culture, and some big-city types from St. Petersburg.

Viktor Bychkov Russian actor

Viktor Nikolayevich Bychkov is a Russian actor. He won a 2002 Golden Eagle Award and a 2004 State Prize of the Russian Federation.

Instead of the expected hunt, Raivo finds himself encountering rampant drinking and adventures. The plot can be divided into several vignettes – an incident with a bear in a sauna, the fireworks, the story of the rural policeman who lost his pistol, the scene on the farm, the story about the cow being transported in the weapons bay in a modern bomber (Tupolev Tu-22M) in exchange for a bottle of vodka, the drive in a "borrowed" police car UAZ to get to know some local milkmaids, etc.

Fireworks low explosive pyrotechnic devices used for aesthetic and entertainment purposes

Fireworks are a class of low explosive pyrotechnic devices used for aesthetic and entertainment purposes. The most common use of a firework is as part of a fireworks display, a display of the effects produced by firework devices. Fireworks competitions are also regularly held at a number of places.

Tupolev Tu-22M strategic bomber aircraft

The Tupolev Tu-22M is a supersonic, variable-sweep wing, long-range strategic and maritime strike bomber developed by the Tupolev Design Bureau. According to some sources, the bomber was believed to be designated Tu-26 at one time. During the Cold War, the Tu-22M was operated by the Soviet Air Forces (VVS) in a missile carrier strategic bombing role, and by the Soviet Naval Aviation in a long-range maritime anti-shipping role. Significant numbers remain in service with the Russian Air Force, and as of 2014 more than 100 Tu-22Ms are in use.

UAZ company

UAZ (УАЗ) is an automobile manufacturer based in Ulyanovsk, Russia, which manufactures off-road vehicles, buses and trucks. It has been part of the Sollers automotive group since 2000.

In the whirlwind of drinking and good times, the hunt itself takes a secondary or even tertiary position.

The second plot line are the Finn’s daydreams of a real hunt based on his impressions from classic Russian literature. Short episodes from the pre-revolutionary period periodically appear throughout the film as inserts woven into the primary storyline. “Historical” hunting differs greatly form the modern version. The participants of the traditional hunt, unlike their would-be hunter contemporaries, enjoy conversation in French, flirting with women and constant treats without forgetting what’s important – tracking a large wolf.

The contrasting story lines of the foolish contemporary fumbling and the circumspect traditional entertainment intersect in the finale. Raivo's surreal experience is highlighted by several peculiar incidents. e.g. Kuzmich picking a pineapple from the hedgerow, Earth being visible in the night sky etc.

Pineapple species of plant

The pineapple is a tropical plant with an edible multiple fruit consisting of coalesced berries, also called pineapples, and the most economically significant plant in the family Bromeliaceae.

A notable feature of the film is the range of different languages which are spoken by the characters throughout: Russian, English, Finnish, German, and French.


Semyon Strugachyov Russian actor

Semyon Mikhailovich Strugachyov is a Soviet and Russian film and stage actor, People's Artist of Russia (2008).

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  1. "Особенности национальной охоты". VokrugTV.