Pink Taxi

Pink Taxi


Reviewed by: Val Kermode

There are 22 pink taxis in Moscow, driven for women by women. Director Uli Gaulke follows three of these women as they ferry their passengers round this bleak, wintery city.

Marina is a lively, upbeat soul making the best of her life since her husband left her for a younger woman. Much of her income is spent on her two teenage children. Her friends, Alla and Vitka, have also been disappointed in love. When they get together away from work they talk about men who drink, men who leave and love that simply dies. Vitka says: “Love is just a temporary thing”, as they raise an ironic glass to International Men’s Day.

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The conversation in these cabs is certainly different from that of male taxi drivers. The women drive for different reasons, for the money, for the independence, for the reassurance of knowing that they can get by without men. But one thing they all enjoy is talking with their passengers. Many of the women who can afford to take taxis are professionals who tell the drivers about their business, be it high class cosmetics or lingerie. But Marina and friends ask probing questions, and their passengers tell them about relationships, divorce, even the pet names their partners use.

This soon begins to feel like a good idea stretched too thinly. What could have made an absorbing short film becomes monotonous when spread over 80 minutes. Nearly all of the material is filmed inside the cab, and from the same angle, interspersed with the driver’s view of a mostly dreary Moscow. The very nature of the concept makes it difficult to open out. Despite some humorous and poignant moments, I eventually felt desperate to be dropped off.

Reviewed on: 06 Nov 2009
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An introduction to Olga Fomina, Moscow's first women-only taxi service.
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Director: Uli Gaulke

Starring: Olga Fomina

Year: 2009

Runtime: 80 minutes

Country: Germany


Doc/Fest 2009

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