In the Nineteenth Century, at the seaside resort of Yalta, the upper class Dimitri Gurov from Moscow meets Anna Sergeyovna walking with her little dog. Both have unhappy marriages: Dimitri ...
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In the Nineteenth Century, at the seaside resort of Yalta, the upper class Dimitri Gurov from Moscow meets Anna Sergeyovna walking with her little dog. Both have unhappy marriages: Dimitri has a marriage of convenience arranged by the family when he was a college boy and Anna married a lackey for love that has gone, and they have a love affair. When Anna returns to Saratov and Dimitri to Moscow, he has a boring life at home, spending his time working and going to the club after hours alone to drink and play cards with his friends. On Christmas, Dimitri misses Anna and lies to his wife, telling that he has a business trip to Saint Petersburg. However, he heads to Saratov and he meets Anna in the Opera House with her husband. Their love kindles and Anna promises to meet him in Moscow. In a period when divorce would be unthinkable, Anna and Dimitri are doomed to meet each other in hotel rooms. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
They don't make films like this any more. In film you either make it in the best time honoured classical tradition: logical sequence, irony, exquisite painstaking set-ups with perfect lighting, costumes, extras, everything pleasing to the eye and the heart and you find others watching it with a smile on their faces; or you make it so fast, jump edits, ramping, so wild that only you know the rules. Well you can do it the Clint Eastwood way which is the perfectly oiled machine: film them during the rehearsal. He really belongs to the classical genre. The problem with the second way is that you can't sit easily through two hours of a movie made like that. A pop video of two minutes fine, otherwise you emerge from the cinema with your brain fried and the stupid expression you get after sitting through three hours of watching ad commercial festivals. I've done it many times, and it's unnatural, and not good for you. THE LADY WITH THE LITTLE DOG is a perfect little story, superbly acted, observed, costumed, directed, lit, everything. A masterpiece of black and white. It cannot be faulted in any way. It must have taken ages to do the set-ups, something no one can afford to do these days; but then with the state paying the salaries, who was counting? So it was made during the Soviet era: but what is perfect, is perfect, for all time.
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