USSR

Vladimir Bortko – Sobache serdtse AKA Heart of a Dog (1988)

Professor Preobrazhensky and his colleague place some human parts into a dog named Sharik. Soon the dog transforms into a human.

Quote:
This movie (and yes, it’s a movie – it was shot as a two-parter, but the two parts together come down to slightly more than 2 hours) is one of the unsung masterpieces of world cinema. A very well-mannered, and yet at the same time absolutely savage denunciation of the Soviet regime and the type of person who flourished under it, the film is a faithful adaptation of the long-banned eponymous book by Mikhail Bulgakov. Read More »

Kote Mardjanishvili – Komunaris chibukhi aka Trubka komunara aka Pipe of Communard (1929)

After the defaet in the Prussian war, famine and riots exploded in Paris. The wife of Lui Ru, a carpenter, could no longer stand proverty, left her son with his father and eloped to Versailles with a butcher. Lui died on the barricades. His comrades got executed. Lui’s son was among those executed. For the sake of his own entertainment the officer aimed at the pipe that Lui’s son was holding in his mouth and shot him to death. Read More »

Leonid Gaidai – Ivan Vasilevich menyaet professiyu AKA Ivan Vasilyevich Changes Occupation (1973)

Ivan Vasilyevich Changes Occupation
An unconventional comedy based on M. Bulgakov’s play, “Ivan Vassilevich,” when inventor, Timofeev builds a time machine, things go awry. Tsar Ivan the Terrible comes into the year 1973, while Ivan Bunsha, an apartment complex manager, and George Miloslavsky, a petty burglar, are transferred to 16th century Moscow accidentally. Read More »

Oleg Frelikh – Prostitutka aka Prostitute (1927)

From Imdb:
Prostitution, Statistics And Harangues, 13 November 2009
5/10
Author: FerdinandVonGalitzien
“Prostitutka” (1927) is a Bolshevist silent rarity, unusual because of its subject matter, that being prostitution in the U.S.S.R. The world’s oldest profession requires a treatment both delicate and balanced, not an easy topic for a first time director like Herr Oleg Frelikh. Actually, this little known work was Frelikh’s only film as a director (prior to this, he had been an actor) and it’s a flawed but interesting effort. Read More »

Nazim Tulyakhodzayev – Veld (1987)

Two children get a present from their parents, an electronic game. Via gigantic television screens, Peter and Wendy lose themselves for days in the African “veldt” and watch with excitement as lions devour antelopes.

Meanwhile, strange things take place outside the house: An atmosphere of hostility forms in the city, and the citizens are unsettled by the materialization of ghosts and the memories of their loved ones… Read More »

Henrikas Sablevicius – Musu vasara (1963)

Synopsis:
A children’s short film about the summer adventures of a schoolboy and his dog. The protagonist of the film seeks to get on TV to demonstrate the “extraordinary talent” of his four-legged friend … The game story is illustrated with the documentary shots of the summer holiday of the Lithuanian pioneers of the early 60’s. The information: “Our summer” is the first Lithuanian children’s television film, as well as the first work of the Lithuanian SSR television, specially shot for the “Intervision” system – an international television network, which included some socialist countries and republics of the USSR, and Finland. Read More »

Mikhail Kalatozov – Neotpravlennoye pismo aka The Letter Never Sent (1959)

Неотправленное письмо

This film is based on the eponymous book by Valery Osipov. Four geologists are searching for diamonds in the wilderness of Siberia. After a long and tiresome journey they manage to find their luck and put the diamond mine on the map. The map must be delivered back to Moscow. But on the day of their departure a terrible forest fire wreaks havoc, and the geologists get trapped in the woods. Read More »