Mother and Son is one of those films that provides a genuine challenge to anyone trying to clearly define exactly what it is that makes it so damned special. As a reviewer you get used to dealing in the traditional elements of narrative cinema, things like pace, story, humour, dialogue, action and tension. But consider the following plot summary:
A loving and dutiful son comforts his dying mother in her final days.
And that’s it.
Story-wise there’s nothing else to it. They sit, they talk, he carries her into the woodland that surrounds her isolated home and later leaves her to rest and walks by himself. There, I’ve covered just about everything except the fine detail. And it’s paced so slowly that everything but the soundtrack intermittently comes to a complete halt.
And yet Mother and Son is a beautiful and intensely moving cinematic experience. Director Alexandr Sokurov (Russian Ark, The Sun) is not interested in giving this event a familiar dramatic context, but instead has chosen to capture the essence and emotions of the experience, visually and aurally exploring the all-encompassing feelings of love and impending loss that come from watching someone that close to you fade from the world. There is no set-up, no pre-event character building, no sudden revelations or twists – this is cinema pared down to its narrative basics.
2.21GB | 1h 11m | 962×576 | mkv