Vladimir Menshov: “I can’t believe I’m 80”
On September 17, filmmaker, screenwriter, Honored Artist, People's Artist of the RSFSR, Vladimir Menshov, will turn 80 years old. He was born in Baku in 1939 and spent the war years there. Menshov recalls that Baku has always been an international city. There, future director witnessed erection of the Government House, which was built by captured Germans, and children ran to them to exchange bread for plain wooden toys.
“In addition to the first eight years of my life in Baku, I had another unforgettable year of youth when I worked as a sailor in the Caspian Sea. I was already fairly mature guy and perceived life at a different level. At that time we lived in the Montino district - not far from the Schmidt factory, where all my male relatives worked. After a working day, the entire teams sat at our large table. These gatherings were pure demonstration of friendship of the Soviet peoples. A toast to friendship was often heard, because we sat represented almost all nationalities of the USSR," Menshov said in an interview with Vestnik Kavkaza.
From Baku, he went right to Moscow, where he entered the Moscow Art Theater School, and in 1981 Menshov’s film “Moscow Does Not Believe in Tears” was awarded the Academy Award of the American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences as the best film in foreign language. A few years later he shot another cinematic masterpiece - "Love and Pigeons".
On the eve of his anniversary, Vladimir Menshov met with reporters and spoke about his feelings before the 80th birthday: “I have to somehow find strength in myself and just live with this idea. I can’t believe I'm turning 80. It is encouraging that more and more people live until after 80. Not so long ago, Marlene Hutsiev died at the age of 92. This generation, which survived the war, survived the difficult post-war years, almost all lived in starving communal apartments. Life didn't really spoil us."
“For my anniversary, I have compiled a list of guests. Right now I'm shortening it because when all friends and acquaintances gather at one place, when there are so many people, people don’t really see each other, and holiday quickly turns into something I don't want. I want more conversations and meetings with people which I haven’t seen for a long time. That's why I’ll reduce this list to 40-50 old and new friends," Menshov said.