Elki / Six Degrees of Celebration

Christmas Trees (Six Degrees of Celebration) / Ёлки

Published: August 13, 2016

Christmas Trees (Ёлки; also called in English) is a 2010 Russian comedy, the first in a multi-film series. Six different directors created different parts of the film.

The film consists of nine loosely connected stories that all center on New Year’s (which is one of the most important holidays in Russia and more or less the equivalent of the American/British Christmas, down to many of the traditions). It takes place in eleven cities all over Russia, with fourteen different main characters. They’re all facing problems, and it’s only through a New Year’s miracle, plus the theory of six degrees of separation, that they can overcome them. One of the main plot points is that Varya, an orphan living in Kaliningrad, has decided that the president of Russia is her father, and she is waiting for him to acknowledge her. The actual president at the time, Dmitry Medvedev, played himself, though his role only consisted of a few phrases.

The film got pretty good reviews and was well received by audiences. New Year’s films and movies are an enormous institution in Russian and this film has spawned three sequels so far, and another is in the works.

Find Elki (Six Degrees of Celebration) on Amazon


Directors: Timur Bekmambetov, Aleksandr Voytinskiy, Aleksandr Andryushchenko, Yaroslav Chevazhevskiy, Ignas Yoninas, Dmitry Kiselyov
Stars: Alina Bulynko, Sergey Pokhodaev, Ivan Urgant, Sergey Svetlakov, Yelena Plaksina, Aleksandr Golovin, Aleksandr Domogarov Jr., Galina Stakhanova, and others
Production company: Bazelevs Productions
Box office take: $22.77 million

Official trailer:

Find Elki (Six Degrees of Celebration) on Amazon

Elki / Six Degrees of Celebration

About the author

Julie Hersh

Julie studied Russian as a Second Language in Irkutsk and before that, Bishkek, with SRAS's Home and Abroad Scholarship program, with the goal of someday having some sort of Russia/Eurasia-related career. She recently got her master’s degree from the University of Glasgow and the University of Tartu, where she studied women’s dissent in Soviet Russia. She also has a bachelor’s degree in literature from Yale. Some of her favorite Russian authors are Sorokin, Shishkin, Il’f and Petrov, and Akhmatova. In her spare time Julie cautiously practices martial arts, reads feminist websites, and taste-tests instant coffee for her blog.

Program attended: Home and Abroad Scholar

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