In 1957 Pierre Duran, a graduate of the École Normale, comes to Moscow on a university exchange. Here he gets acquainted with the ballerina of the Bolshoi Theatre, Kira Galkina, and the photographer Valeri Uspensky. Thanks to this acquaintance, Pierre plunges into the cultural life of the capital, not only official but also underground culture. He starts an affair with Kira. But his studies and his acquaintance with Soviet life are not Pierre’s only aim. He is searching for his father, the White officer Tatischev, who was arrested in the late 1930s. Their meeting is the film’s climax.
During his year in Moscow Pierre lives a whole life, absolutely unlike everything that he knew before. When Pierre returns to Paris, he hopes to see Kira again some time. In the pocket of his jacket he has a microfilm with the issue of the underground journal “Gramota”.