With the support of the Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation, the Moscow Government and the Department of Culture of the city of Moscow


Film director Zuri and his partner in crime (who’s also the editor of the film), study the reaction of the audience on the night of the premiere. The director even tries to stop and interrogate some of the viewers at the exit. For the couples rushing home, movies are a fun way to spend the evening until the nanny’s shift is over. For the director – eight years of blood and tears, high hopes and broken hearts – perhaps in even more literal sense than ever. After a ride with a grumpy taxi driver, Zuri decides to get to the hospital's emergency room: this is the beginning of his Odyssey through the night city. During his wild ride the filmmaker will try to save the distribution of the film, describe the horrors of the industry to the billposters, discover the world of digital promotion, and save both his life and love life, and finally to answer one question: what was it all for? “Peaches & Cream” is the fourth feature film by Israeli director Gur Bentwich, a film deeply personal yet painted with bold strokes. Bentwich, who made a documentary about the weird history behind his family a couple of years ago, once again turns to a very intimate subject: he plays the main character, while his partner on screen is played by his wife and a constant collaborator, Maya Kenig. Bentwich brings his personal experience to a versatile level through casting: the taxi driver, whose car becomes a pretty significant location, is played by Dover Koshashvili. Koshahvili, also a director, once began his career with “Im Hukim”, a Cannes awardee, then adapted Chekhov's “The Duel” in the USA and is, far and by, an author of a great significance for the Israeli film industry. His role in “Peaches & Cream” fits into a long-standing cinematic interpretation of a taxi driver as a guide to another world – in this case (and at first glance) the world of a night city, which then suddenly turns out to be somewhat absurd, sharp-toothed, and hostile. It feels perfectly organic that Guy Raz's camerawork reminds of a late Michael Chapman of Scorsese’s «Taxi Driver». An impressionist-like symphony of a big city, neon-noir aesthetics, a helterskelter of restless night lights. However, it is still a comedy, so Bentwich's flung is primarily existential, the characters Zuri meets are hearty eccentrics, and the mirky taxi driver, gloatingly quoting the reviews to the director, is clearly an angel in disguise. As Jonathan Rosenbaum, a film critic, once noted – either snarky or as a compliment – «Taxi Driver» has started a trend for «a glamorous depiction of hell on earth.» Zuri too, as well, has to face this hell – but his hell is cinematically complex, filled with neon, sequin-dressed goddesses of digital, and feverish hallucinations about Reykjavik, but, after all, one shall realize: hell is not in the others, but is in you. 
Olga Artemyeva
The Festival Daily