One Man Dies A Million Times – in search of humanity


One Man Dies A Million Times is director Jessica Oreck’s feature-film debut, which tells the true story of the Saint Petersburg seed bank. Through the lives of her characters, she seeks answers to questions of human existence. The Fixafilm team had the pleasure of doing postproduction on the film as a prize awarded during the US in Progress 2017 event, part of the American Film Festival in Wrocław. 

One Man Dies A Million Times is set during the Second World War, with Saint Petersburg besieged by German troops. Cut off from food supplies, the city’s inhabitants begin to die of starvation and attempt to survive at any cost. 

In these tough times, the film’s heroes, Alyssa and Maksim, work at the Institute for Plant Genetic Resources in central Petersburg. The institute is home to the world’s first bank of seeds from all over the planet, offering hope for the future of agriculture. Our two heroes decide to undertake the demanding task of trying to protect this collection in a city dying of hunger. 

The institute still exists, and time has not diminished the vital role it can play as we face new problems, such as climate change and environmental deterioration. Despite all our great leaps in biotechnology, we still cannot replace the genetic diversity that the botanists in the film protected with their own lives. 


Parajanov’s Hakob Hovnatanyan on the big screen!


On March 22, the National Portrait Gallery in London will be screening Sergei Parajanov’s film Hakob Hovnatanyan (1967), restored by Fixafilm’s specialists in cooperation with the Armenian National Cinema Centre and the Kino Klassika Foundation. There are also plans to restore other films by the director as part of the joint Hamo Bek-Nazarov Project

The film explores the work of the 19th-century portrait painter, Hakob Hovnatanyan. Parajanov, renowned for his extravagant style, only partially shows us Hovnatanyan’s works, concentrating instead on details of the paintings. In the second half of the documentary, Parajanov presents the historical centre of Tbilisi, where Hovnatanyan used to live and the director himself grew up. 

It is worth mentioning that Hakob Hovnatanyan was made shortly before Parajanov’s most famous film, The Colour of Pomegranates, which showcases the director’s individual style, so esteemed among cinephiles. 

Sergei Parajanov was a Soviet director of Armenian descent, regarded as one of the 20th century’s most outstanding filmmakers. He endured many years of political persecution and was imprisoned for his outspoken opinions and artistic independence.