During World War II, 12-year old Ivan works as a spy on the eastern front. The small Ivan can cross the German lines unnoticed to collect information. Three Soviet officers try to take care... See full summary »
Like the Russian poet of 'Nostalghia', who, accompanied by his Italian guide and translator, traveled through Italy researching the life of an 18th-century Russian composer, Andrei ... See full summary »
This short film was a student project for a Soviet state film school, and I don't know how much exposure it would have had at the time it was made. It survives for viewing because one of the three students directors was a young Andrei Tarkovsky, and though his resources were constrained, the strength of the work is made evident through how much is done with a very basic production.
The door out of the restaurant seems to lead to a blank wall, but we nonetheless get the lonely atmosphere of a small-town American diner; the filmmakers really seem to have drank in the feel of the Hemingway they read for this adaptation. It's really a twenty-minute atmosphere piece, and it does that very well - the two murderers create a complete and stark sense of threat and menace.
In a constrained setting they made a claustrophobic and memorable film, with a real film-noir feel where we weren't necessarily expecting to find it. High marks!
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