A young Ukrainian woman dreams of owning a hair salon as she spends her days endlessly cleaning hotel rooms in Germany. Determined to achieve her goal, Marija is willing to compromise her body, her relationships and her true self to make it happen.
The opening sequence of Marija speaks volumes about the titular character without even showing us her face. The camera follows at her shoulder while she walks block after block through the city of Dortmund to her home, a rundown hotel for immigrants. It's the sound of her footsteps on the pavement that tells us who Marija really is — strong, precise, determined, and unwavering.
Upon arriving at her spare but clean cubicle of an apartment, the young Ukrainian émigré discovers that her landlord Cem (Sahin Eryilmaz) is already waiting for her and for the weeks-overdue rent. They arrive at an unpleasant entente that has far-reaching consequences.
Recently out of a job, Marija does her best to weather the tribulations of being an immigrant woman on her own, occasionally showing glimpses of her closely guarded dreams and hopes. Her intelligence and ambition lead her to an involvement with what at first seems to be a legitimate enterprise. But when the truth comes to light, she sees that factors far beyond her control threaten everything she has worked so hard for.
2016 Screening Schedule