Passions (1994) has a slightly different program: Accompany a pack of extroverted, sub-Fellini nutlogs to a horse farm, where they prance, vamp, and blabber about horses, love, and life. “It’s like somebody nudges me and whispers: Ask them—will they bear it?” one character says, summarizing Muratova’s strategy. Photographed in uncharacteristically lush colors, Passions won an indulgent Russian Oscar. Continue reading
from review @ Kinokultura:
At the heart of Kira Muratova’s newest film, The Tuner (Nastroishchik, 2004), is her characteristic and enduring love of predation—predation for its own sake. Of course, any talk of “the heart of Muratova’s work” is a judgment of anatomy rather than sentiment, as any admirer would attest. With The Tuner, she has produced an extraordinary new film that offers a complex assessment of the human subject, civilization, and the creative act. Continue reading
In the old days it was called hypochrondria, or black melancholia. Now, apparently, it’s termed the Asthenic Syndrome. Whatever it is, Nikolai, a teacher of epicly indifferent pupils, has got it, and it’s not much fun. Worse yet, quite a few other people, even an entire society, seem to be afflicted with the same problem writ extremely large… Written by L.H. Wong Continue reading
Plot Outline :
Feisty, diminutive 13-year-old Ivan (Ivan Dobronravov) lives with his mother (Natalia Vdovina) and easygoing, tall, 15-year-old brother Andrei (Vladimir Garin) in a small, grimy Russian town. Their father (Konstantin Lavronenko) has long since departed the scene – until one day, completely out of the blue, he returns.
A dour, steely presence, Dad doesn’t say much, but next day takes the boys on a “fishing trip.” While Andrei does his best to re-establish friendly terms with his uncommunicative parent, Ivan rebels – and even questions whether this mysterious streanger really is their father at all. When they reach their destination at a remote lake, events take an even more enigmatic turn… Continue reading
A father takes care of his only teenage son with unusual intensity and passion, which results in the son feeling suffocated. Trying to free himself from home, Andrej finds escape among his teenage friends and, above all, with a new girl. Continue reading
Ya-Chaika! / I am a seagull!..
Georgi Paradzhanov’s sensational tape.
On the screen – the woman-phantom. As at a tragical bird, wings of a white lacy shawl tremble. The image is washed away, persons it is not visible almost. She is the heroine of a film “I am the Seagull” which has been shown on film festivals in Venice and Kiev and now for the first time it is presented the Moscow spectators. The film tells about destiny of actress Valentina Karavaeva, a unique which well-known role and remained “Mashenka” (IMDB).
Solve, about what this film: about a painful narcissism, about fidelity to art, about destiny riddles, about dotage or about not recognised genius.
Distributer VHS Karmen video Continue reading
Following up on his shaded character study of Adolf Hitler in Moloch, acclaimed filmmaker Alexander Sokurov directs this companion piece — the second in a planned trilogy — based on the waning days of the life of Vladimir Ilyich Lenin. Set in 1923 in the newly created U.S.S.R., state founder Lenin (Leonid Mozgovoy) — though he is never mentioned by name — is convalescing from a stroke at age 51 in his dacha. Surrounded by watchful guards, a live-in doctor, his wife, and his sister, this formerly titanic figure lives as a virtual prisoner after the deterioration of his health. Unable to make contact with the outside world — newspapers are forcibly removed and the phone lines cut — Lenin spends much of his time puttering around in the garden or eating with his loyal wife. One day, Stalin (Sergei Razhuk) pays him a visit, even though Lenin isn’t quite sure who the future tyrant is. He presents the sick man a walking stick, mentioning that he wanted it to be engraved but Trotsky vetoed the idea. After the visit, Lenin becomes upset that he is living in luxury while his countrymen are starving. This film was screened in competition at the 2001 Cannes Film Festival. ~ Jonathan Crow, All Movie Guide Continue reading