Domovoi are the house elves of Russia. They live in the home, and as long as the people in that home are peaceful and respectful, Domovoi will help the family. If they are unhappy, Domovoi can become mischievous, petulant and violent. Most Russians cherish their Domovoi and will invite the house elf to come with them to a new home when they move. If the Domovoi is abandoned, it can spell trouble for the next family.
In “Domovoi” (2019), this all gets explained, which makes the film a good place to jump into Russian fairy lore. A mom and her daughter find the perfect place to live, and it’s sold to them by an unscrupulous real estate agent, who has made use of the angry Domovoi to resell the same property over and over.
Slapstick comedy ensues as the Domovoi fights against the mother and the cat for dominion over the house. Only the daughter offers a voice of reason, which goes unheeded by the mother, but softens the heart of the Domovoi. The strange characters in the film and its effects create a nice fantasy world for “Domovoi” with enough Russian culture to put this out of your ordinary world experience (if you’re not one of my regular Russian readers; though those familiar with Germany and Austria will recognize the Domovoi as akin to wichteln, and Britain has house elves.)
Explore the dual nature of fairies (something Lilac City Comic Con alum Ty Hulse talks about in his book “A Writer’s Guide to Fairies, Witches, and Vampires from Fairy Tales and Lore”) and see one story about the mythical creatures who inspired “Penguins in the Pipes.”
Watching foreign films is a good way to improve your creativity, especially when they are fun. Let “Domovoi” help you gain a new perspective, spark new ideas, and replenish your creative well.
For more on creativity, get “Disneyland Is Creativity.” Order “Penguinate! Essays and Short Stories.” Preorder “The Haunted Mansion Is Creativity.”