For a numbers of years now, the author has been contemplating the idea of this film inspired by the light in the staircase of the block of flats, in which he grew up. Long ago, a flock of children were running up and down the stairs. They drew pictures on the walls. Now, in the times of computer games, this is just a memory. The author dedicates the first part of the film to this memory. In the second part, he, together with his girlfriend, undertakes an imaginary journey up and down the staircase to examine its social function.
The utilitarian function of a staircase is to liaise separate floors, on which people live, however angled the staircase in a different way, it liaise man with its community. So, the staircase could be considered a means of communication. To this effect, the desolate staircase of Block No.12 is an allegory of the alienation of people in the post-socialist society in Bulgaria. And if climbing up and down are allegories of human life, then the whole film is an allegory of life of that society. Not quite pessimistic but equally not quite promising, from time to time poetic and full of sunshine, from time to time filthy and as if all the time looking through the bars at the rest of the world.
The pictures on the walls, the ghostly sounds coming from people, who are not in frame, the stains and the filthiness indirectly, introduce the people, who live there. These are marks, which have remained as a proof that the staircase, though desolate, lives its own life. It has not lost its social function and has turned into a field of unconscious expression in time when socialist realism has not gone off forever.
Neno Belchev, 12 – 15 June 2006 after his notes of 2004 and 2005.