February follows Petar during three distinct periods of his humble life in rural eastern Bulgaria. Sun, work, land, sheep and birds. But there is nothing ordinary about this unconventional man, who follows his poetic path and accepts his destiny with no regrets.
Kamen Kalev’s February is a very much handmade film and decidedly poetic. He directed, wrote, edited, and acted as cinematographer. Often the humans are just dots in a stunningly layered open range landscape beneath a vast sky.
Kalev divides his film into three chapters that correspond, as it turns out, to three stages in Petar’s life. In chapter 1 (past) he is 8 years old, in chapter 2 (military) he is 18, gets married and serves on a barren yet beautiful island. The third chapter is called “February”, Petar is now 82. National history dissolves into something bigger: a view of life as a mysterious continuity of “incarnations”, with the patterns on old women’s skirts as a metaphor for a connectedness beyond individuality and ancestry.