Eight-hour epic based on the book of the same name by Leo Tolstoy. Two main story-lines are complex and intertwined. One is the love story of young Countess Natasha Rostova and Count Pierre... See full summary »
The story of a man (Andrey Sokolov) whose life was ruthlessly crippled by World War II. His wife and daughters were killed during the bombing of his village, he spent some time as a ... See full summary »
BBC production of 'Sergei Prokofiev (I)''s opera "War and Peace" performed by the Kirov Opera under the baton of Valery Gergiev in St. Petersburg, Russia. The love story of young Countess ... See full summary »
It's summer break, so Toto (Altomaro) and Quique (Mora) can dream their life away by biking around their neighbourhood and spying on Quique's maid, Chabelita (Aguirre). When Toto's young ... See full summary »
A cinematic essay that takes us through different couples who allow us to penetrate their intimacy. Irene and Federico meet by chance after ten years of not seeing each other. Manuel is ... See full summary »
Manuel Castro Rosas,
In July 1942, in the Second World War, the rearguard of the Red army protects the bridgehead of the Don River against the German army while the retreating soviet troops cross the bridge. ... See full summary »
A man living in Mexico becomes convinced of his true nature as a fallen angel and fights off the bully's tormenting his friends, drawing a government agent to his situation and forcing them all to escape their clutches.
José Luis Badillo,
Eight-hour epic based on the book of the same name by Leo Tolstoy. Two main story-lines are complex and intertwined. One is the love story of young Countess Natasha Rostova and Count Pierre Bezukhov, who is unhappy in his marriage. Another is the "Great Patriotic War" of 1812 against the invading Napoleon's Armies. The people of Russia from all classes of society stand up united against the enemy. The 500,000 strong Napoleon's army moves through Russia and causes much destruction culminating in the battle of Borodino. The Russian army has to retreat. Moscow is occupied, looted and burned down, but soon Napoleon loses control and has to flee. Both sides suffer tremendous losses in the war, and Russian society is left irrevocably changed. Written by
"War and Peace" has a bombastic reputation and is erroneously believed by many to be the most expensive film in history. It is also maintained that it employed the largest army of extras ever. Both assertions are wrong. While the Soviet statement it cost $100 million (in 1967 terms) was oft repeated in the American press upon the film's release in the US, the protocols of the USSR's State Cinema Committee from 25.8.1965 reveal that its approved budget was 8.5 million ruble, of which 2.51M were to be paid to the military for its services. The producers' financial statements set their total expenditures on "War and Peace" to have been 8,291,712 ruble after its completion in August 1967. Though a huge sum in Soviet terms, it was equal to $9,213,013 by the contemporary exchange rate and, considering ruble inflation, about 2 billion ruble in 2012 (~$67 million under the 2012 rate). In addition, the famous claim that 120,000 soldier extras participated in the recreation of the Battle of Borodino was denied by director Bondarchuk himself, who told National Geographic when asked about this (Peter. T. White, "The World of Tolstoy", June 1986 issue): "that is exaggeration, all I had was 12,000." See more »
During the battle of Borodino sequence, as the camera pans down the lines of Russian troops sitting in reserve, a soldier can be clearly seen wearing a modern wristwatch. See more »
And not for this day and hour alone were the mind and conscience of this man darkened, on whom the burden of events weighed more heavily than on all the others who took part in it. Never, to the end of his life, had he the least comprehension of goodness, of beauty or of truth, or of the significance of his actions, which were too contrary to goodness and truth, too remote from everything human for him ever to understand their meaning. He could not disavow his deeds, lauded as they were by half...
See more »
The epic accomplishment of this film will crush your skull.
If you can find it, watch it.
Admittedly, the 7 hour plus running time is pretty daunting, but consider the source material. This film deservedly won the best foreign picture Oscar when it was finally released in the U.S. The fact that a Soviet film was able to garner such an award during the height of the Cold War is a testament to its greatness.
There are 3 intermissions to this, the Pangaea of all epic films, and each section draws the viewer in more than the last. The spectacle will blow your mind in a way that digital effects never will be able to do. To actually see the Red Army (and what looks like all of it) marching in costume over the expanse of miles into the distance will change any prior notions of spectacle you held. Ben-Hur, The Ten Commandments, whatever awed you before is chicken feed compared to the brutal grandeur of Bondarchuk's recreation of The War of 1812.
There are beautiful interludes of excellent acting amidst extremely costly sets--it's a shame I don't know Russian because those subtitles chew up a lot of exquisite scenery. The characters are fully developed, the direction is inspired (no run-of-the-mill static camera work in any of this).
They showed this in 70mm at The Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood last year. Before that it was 10 years without a screening in the U.S. We can't afford to let this shimmering prize of film history lapse. In a theatre, or if it is ever issued on DVD, this movie will deeply reward all those who watch it. There was nothing as grand as War & Peace before; there will be nothing on its scale ever again. Treasure this masterpiece...if you can find it.
83 of 86 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?