Not as good as Eugene Onegin but still a great film version of Tchaikovsky's opera
As a lover of Tchaikovsky's music, I very much like The Queen of Spades, if not as much as Eugene Onegin. Roman Tikhomirov's Queen of Spades is very good, as far as Tikomirov's opera films go it is not as good as Eugene Onegin, mainly because some of the acting in the latter is a little more incisive and perhaps a little more subtle. However, I still love the production values in this one, it doesn't feel stage-bound and the costumes and settings are really sumptuous with lavish colour and skilled photography. The orchestra play wonderfully especially in the Three Cards scenes and in Hermann's soliloquy in the crowded ballroom, and the conducting does nothing to undermine the drama. The acting is generally excellent, Oleg Strizhenov broods effectively as Hermann but the character's insanity occasionally borders on shrill. Olga Krassina is a lovely and very aristocratic Lisa, but the best was Yelena Polevetskaya, commanding every frame as a very mummy-like Countess. The singing is exemplary as well, Hermann is strong, sometimes lyrical but with the right intensity, Lisa is touching and even vulnerable and the Countess is appropriately powerful. All in all, a great Queen of Spades. 9/10 Bethany Cox
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