Moscow Does Not Believe in Tears (1980) Poster

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10/10
What a great movie!
Dennis Littrell21 April 2007
This is one of the most captivating love stories I've ever seen on film. It starts with a young woman (Katya, played by Vera Alentova) reporting to her Worker's Dormitory friends that she has flunked by two points the exam to get into university. It ends with the most incredible sweetness of life.

It is like a French film done by a Russian company (which is what it is). The Moscow we see that does not believe in tears does believe in love, and it is not a Moscow of politics, although some people do call one another "comrade." This is a woman's point of view film (a "chick flick") that transcends any genre cage. It begins slowly, almost painfully dull in a way that will remind the viewer of all the clichés about Russia, the unstylish dress, the worker's paradise that isn't, the sharp contrast between Moscow and the peasants who live outside the city. Katya works in a factory. She works at a drill press. She is obviously underemployed. Lyudmila (Irina Muravyova) works in a bakery. She is probably gainfully employed for the time and place. They are friends, twentysomethings who are on the make for a man, but not a man from the sticks. They pretend to be university post docs or something close to that and they impress some people as they house-sit a beautiful Moscow apartment.

This is how their adult life begins in a sense. Lyudmila falls in love with an athlete; Katya becomes infatuated with a television cameraman. One thing leads to another and before we know it they are forty. Neither relationship worked out. The athlete becomes an alcoholic, the cameraman, in the sway of his mother, believes that Katya is beneath him (once he finds out that she works in a factory). How wrong he is, of course.

But no more of the plot. I won't spoil it. The plot is important. The characterizations are important. The story is like a Russian novel in that it spans lots of time, but once you are engaged you will find that the two and a half hours fly by and you will, perhaps like me, say at the end "What a great movie!" My hat is off to director Vladimir Menshov and to Valentin Chernykh who wrote the script and to the cast. I've mentioned Vera Alentova and Irina Muravyova, but Aleksey Batlov who played Gosha was also excellent. I don't want to say anymore. Just watch the film. It is one of the best I've ever seen.

(Note: Over 500 of my movie reviews are now available in my book "Cut to the Chaise Lounge or I Can't Believe I Swallowed the Remote!" Get it at Amazon!)
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10/10
Very good movie
akoumare17 October 2002
This was one of the last movies I have seen before leaving Russia. I am watching it every time with a lot of pleasure. It is funny, and touching to tears some moments. It is also very realistic, as many women in Russia went through the same problems as the three girls, and it touches most of people in Russia. It is also showing that it is never late to restart and suceed in your life, and in spite of difficulties it is possible to reach your goal and success (whatever it means for you).
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9/10
Wonderfully entertaining and touching
Vash200129 September 2005
Warning: Spoilers
This may be the first Russian movie I saw that did not end tragically. There were the normal problems of living in Moscow, particularly for the 3 young women trying to make it under very difficult circumstances. The things they do (particularly Lyudmilla) are funny and yet give us a glimpse into how difficult it must have been for them. Katya, the main character, goes through her trials but comes out on top. She does better than anyone else (out of the 3), even raises a daughter (without a husband), but she secretly longs for a man in her life. After many failed attempts are relationships she accidentally meets the man who turns out to be the perfect one for her. However, they too go through some struggles before coming to the final realization that they belong together. It is a wonderful story of struggles, successes, and life in general. The acting was wonderful, particularly the actress who played Katya. Her young daughter (Alexandra) was adorable. The scene I liked the most was Gosha invites Katya and her daughter to a picnic, to get to know each other better (after declaring that he is going to marry Katya). Katya is tired and she just falls asleep in a chair in the fresh air. Gosha gently puts a blanket on her. Very simple, but very caring and touching. There are many wonderful moments in the movie. The humor is sprinkled throughout and it is very refreshing to see a movie like this one. The most valuable thing to me was it gave a glimpse into life in the USSR, and yet we can relate to the story and the characters on a human level.
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9/10
a nice movie. Splendid, in one word
sym4ny7 May 2005
This is a tribute to the Soviet era some people in Ukraine still consider to be the best years of their lives.I saw the movie in my child years, but didn't pay much attention to it. Now, when I study film history and techniques, the movie revealed to me some dark sides. "Moskva sliezam nie verit", I guess, tells a story of a humble Soviet woman in pursuit for happiness with a beloved man. This woman does not care about feminism. True love of a man-"stronghold", a man who is ready to comfort her any time she needs--that is what she is searching for in life. The movie shows some cloudy moments in the way to happiness three female friends go along. And the movie ends up where it should--an "island of placid" I watch it in original. Have to say, many phrases from the movie are cited in Ukrainian and Russian-speaking communities these days.
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10/10
You usually don't expect to see some of these things.
Lee Eisenberg2 March 2006
Warning: Spoilers
The second Best Foreign Language Film winner from the Soviet Union was something impressive. "Moskva slezam ne verit" (called "Moscow Does Not Believe in Tears" in English) starts out portraying three college friends in 1958, and picks up twenty years later.

In 1958, Katya (Vera Alentova) is motivated, hard-working and bright, while Liudmila (Irina Muravyova) is manipulative, shallow and scheming, and Antonina (Raisa Ryazanova) is shy and simple. They're all from the countryside, but all looking to get jobs in the city. Over the next few days, Antonina ends up with one Nikolai, and these two are the most traditional; Liudmila ends up with hockey player Sergei. Katya, meanwhile, gets filmed for a TV project on the factory by cinematographer Rudolph, who ends up getting her pregnant. They try to talk things over at a park bench, but he just leaves.

Twenty years later, the movie focuses on Katya's redemption, one might say. She is now the director at the factory (and even gets to drive to work, practically unheard of in the USSR), and her daughter Alexandra is doing quite well. Granted, Katya's successful in her public life, but what about privately? It looks as though her personal life will remain empty until she meets one Gosha (Alexei Batalov), an honest, outspoken, perceptive fellow. She does meet Rudolph again - and this time he's going by his real name Rodion (he called himself Rudolph because western names were popular in the '50's) - but she leaves him at the bench.

This movie makes an interesting use of duality. There are two meetings in the park; Rudolph/Rodion leaves Katya the first time, but she leaves him the second time. Rudolph/Rodion makes two speeches about how TV is the wave of the future and will eliminate theater, movies, and books. There are two trips to the countryside. Katya twice falls asleep crying. Katya is twice filmed for a TV interview by Rudolph/Rodion; she's working at the factory the first time, and she's the director the second time. And finally, there are two scenes where people dance to "Besame mucho". And watch how they use the alarm clock in the middle of the film.

Among other things, how Gosha and Rudolph/Rodion bond at the end is classic for Soviet cinema. And, we get to see remnants of the '50's and '70's that even we in the west can understand: as teenagers, the girls swoon over movie stars (and their socks looked kind of like bobby sox), and people wear colorful clothes in the '70's. A classic in every sense of the word.
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10/10
Oscar-winning story about young dreamers
Chicago_girl30 July 2004
Moving story of three young girls who come to the capital of Soviet Russia in search of their fate. They play rich girls to impress the guys, and succeed in doing so. Katya (the protagonist) does not like the game, but still goes with the girls. But the truth is soon revealed, and Katya's boyfriend breaks up with her. She is pregnant and has to raise a kid alone in a tiny dorm room, and still try to get an education.

The second part shows the three girlfriends 20 years later. Katya is a very successful business lady and has a wonderful daughter. But she hasn't found real love, and the story takes a new turn when she meets Gosha in a train. They both now have to find ways into each other's established lives. A very nice and sincere story that people watch over and over again!
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7/10
A film about three women out for love.
I B7 November 2010
Moscow Does Not Believe In Tears is an appealing comedy-drama with much to say about Soviet society from the 1950s to the 1970s. The cast deliver standout performances, and this is the film's greatest strength. The story is about their lives. The city's scenery is often featured, with cinematography that's good for a Soviet drama film. The score, however, is standard fare, but there are a few notable songs. Considering its high entertainment value it's no wonder that Moscow Does Not Believe In Tears became one of the most popular films in the Soviet Union. It even won an Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film in 1980. It's just one of those films where everyone involved in making it contributed to a result that delivers on all fronts. If the acting or the direction was worse then the result could have been another forgettable drama. Soviet filmmakers, however, specialized in drama films. This is because of the restrictions that were put on them by the government. Many good dramas were released during the Soviet period, and Moscow Does Not Believe In Tears is one of the most memorable. I definitely recommend seeing it.
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Small Theme with a Big Heart
kurtrus1 February 2000
Culturally interesting since this occurs in a Communist country that US propaganda gave little insight on the values and realities of the people. We see idealistic poets who say the older generation made mistakes, women promoted to executive positions, a film produced by the State yet approaching sexual themes, Western idolization, the drudgery of repetitive industrial work, and class distinctions between the haves and have-nots.

Also of interest is the protagonist's view of herself. Without revealing plot twists, it is suffice to say that a woman is socially seen as submissive to the man. This is a shock to Western sensibilities of women's equality, especially as we see her ordeals as a result of a man's selfishness and dominance. What is revealing is that she, herself does not rebel against the System. She works within the parameters, creates her own success, and becomes transformed.

Being Western, I found myself questioning whether she had truly achieved something. The crown of achievement, we are taught, is independence, equality. Whereas she achieved that in a career and in her lifestyle, in her heart, she yearned for a man, to be the little wife, and to submit herself to a patriarchal marriage. But, in the end, who are we to judge another's happiness?
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10/10
too much quality to sum up
wvisser-leusden11 May 2009
Vladimir Menshov's well-balanced 'Moscow does not believe in tears' provides a moving story about human warmth. About fortunes and misfortunes that can befell anyone of us -- enabling us to identify easily.

This film also is about a very East European female eagerness to hunt after Mr. Right. Pressure is on, for in Communist society failure usually meant a lifelong condemnation to a poor, worried, boring and tiring life in some drab Russian provincial town. With a big possibility that your husband would booze himself up too much.

No doubt this film's acting makes its strongest feature. Its uninterrupted, breathtaking quality convincingly carries you back some fifty years in time. To Moscow, the capital of the USSR. Although this Communist society has been gone for a long time, 'Moscow does not believe in tears' will easily get you back there.
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10/10
story about Soviet Cinderella
lenatigress17 January 2002
If you try to understand the meaning of Soviet mode of life (especially place of woman in Soviet society), this film represents the best one you can find for this purpose. The destinies of three women are depicted in clear and awesome way, and the most important you can see is that whatever happens in life, try to be optimist and to do everything not to give up living and being happy.
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10/10
Perfect love story
pampeano16 June 1999
A soviet film very emotive and marvelous.When I saw by first turn I to touch much,because is a realist story about the life. And is more,like is a movie of 1979,in that time not are common see a single woman with a child.Well,my opinion is that this film is like that to announce the future.Well,in this moment are more divorces,single woman with a child,homosexuality, things that in that time not are very common.The director makes very good in to think and to realize this film.Deserving of the Oscar,is one of the films more memorable that I saw. My opinion:A perfect love story.Please,see this film.
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Let's remember this is a Russian Comedy
s34799924 June 2001
Being of Russian descent and a first generation Australian, I first saw this film in the original Russian a year or two after it came out. At the time I thought it was one of the funniest things I had seen in a long long time. I saw it again when our World Movie channel broadcast it and I laughed just as hard and just as long. To understand the comedy in what appears to be a story of feminist angst you need to be Russian. There is no other way to see it. We don't see that the supposed conflict between between the heroine and her lover is that she is a manager and he is not. It's much more primal than that. It is because she EARNS more than he does. Women held managerial positions in the USSR since they first began driving tanks and tractors during the second world war. Most of us are brought up to believe that we can do just about anything, and a lot of the time we have to. So please, if you see this film, remember to laugh. Remember that Yes, Russians aren't happy unless they're miserable but the story of this film is also about the joy of rebuilding lives and relationships for both men and women and about the triumph of the human spirit over seemingly impossible odds.
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10/10
A very clever plot.
bulya227 September 2007
Warning: Spoilers
I've seen this movie many many times. But many times I've noticed some details in the plot which made me estimating again what is really happening there, and what were the writer's main idea in such a plot. The acting is also brilliant, and after seeing this movie several times, each another time makes me thinking again about my and our life, and also about the type of the gender relationships which concerns lies.

The story begins in the late 50's, and the first part concerns the lives of the characters at their early 20's. Then, the film jumps about 20 years forward, and the second part concerns the lives of the characters at their late 30's (or early 40's). The first time you see this movie, most of the interest is how did the lives changed over the 20 years, and what kind of an end the movie has. But it turns out that almost every scene and cite play an important role there, and after seeing it a few times I noticed that the movie is not just about the tales of the three girls and how does lives change.

For example, each of the parts is built by a pattern where the first half tells about the lives of the three girls, and the second half tells about Katya's (main character's) relationship with a boyfriend. In each of the parts the relationship isn't built in a pure way, since Katya must hide some facts about her (and even lie) to make sure everything will go on (I think this is the reason for making Gosha a macho man, and seeing it again you may find out what makes him behave like that). But in the two parts there are different kind of lies and relationships, and I think that makes the writer to put different endings at the parts. Although the first part has a sad end (what also reflects Katya's life further), in the second part the relationship doesn't break after Katya's boyfriend finds the truth about her.

Besides this example, there are many other topics about life which this film concerns. Seeing it enough times makes you sure that Gosha isn't as awful as he seems to be at the first time you see the movie (his past is barley mentioned, but when you find it out, it clears the scene where he meets Nikolay, and what will be afterwards), and therefore the ending may be concerned "good".

Again, this film may be watched again and again, in a very entertaining way, and each time telling you more about the plot. I think that such a film is a masterpiece.
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Good beginning, disintegrates into stereotypes
Verbatima19 July 2001
This film makes one wonder what exactly the heroine worked so hard for. A young girl from a small town comes to Moscow and becomes pregnant. Her lover repudiates her, the lover's mother humiliates her, telling her that she is not a good fit for her big-city dandy son. Rather than leave Moscow and go back to her parents, or try to perform an abortion on herself, the heroine has the baby. She works hard at the factory, getting up at 5 AM every morning, passes grueling entrance exams into college, becomes an engineer -- all while raising her little girl as a single parent and an unwed mother. Bold subject matter for a Soviet movie made in the seventies.

Then -- a compromise: the heroine who, sixteen years after her ordeal, has a good life, a good home, and a prestigious managerial job, falls head over heals for a man who treats her like dirt.

"Moscow Does Not Believe in Tears" was made almost at the same time as the equally celebrated "Workplace Romance" ("Sluzhebnyj Roman"), and they are, in a sense, competitors. Both movies are about single women in their mid- to late thirties who made a brilliant career but were never married. Both heroines are presented as strong-willed, independent individuals in managerial positions, whose lives are nevertheless missing something. But if "Sluzhebnyj Roman" says that life is incomplete without love, "Moscow Does Not Believe in Tears" says that life is incomplete without a man.

Women of the older generation are all in love with "Moscow"'s main male character -- the heroine's ultimate husband. I cannot fathom why -- the actor's cute, but his character is unnerving. One does not need to be a feminist to have a strong urge to throw this man down the stairs. He stifles every impulse of individuality in her; he presumes to know what she wants, what's proper for her and what's not; he patronizes her; he pushes her around. On the train, he begins their acquaintance by commenting: "You have the eyes of a woman who is not married." (What kind of eyes are those?) I cannot see why one would find any charm in such familiarity and cocky self-assurance from a stranger.

It's worth noting that the corresponding character in "Sluzhenyj Roman" -- an excessively mild-mannered, shy man -- learns to stand up to the bossy heroine, but does so without disrespecting her. The character in "Moscow", on the contrary, puts the heroine in her proper place -- which is to be quiet and follow orders.

I think that a Western critic would perceive the ending of "Moscow Does Not Believe in Tears" as ironic and sad. The heroine, a woman who spent her life making something of herself by overcoming seemingly insurmountable obstacles, is last shown fussing around her kitchen for the benefit of a man who was not with her on that long journey, who dares to raise his voice at her in her own home, while eating her food, and who acts as if his very physical presence at the table confers a rare privilege on a woman whose clock is ticking.
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9/10
Worth Watching At least Once!
imdbfriend15 April 2008
This movie is not likable by everyone, although I loved it. There is not much to this movie if we compare it with fast paced action, thriller of Hollywood or intense drama, but instead this is a simple movie of three women friends in general or more specifically of Katerina who is a hard working women, then successful women, unmarried mother and raises her well too. So this movie starts with the friendship of three women characters then shows how their lives are changed when two gets married and other didn't as she got pregnant and her boyfriend left her and then goes to their later stage of lives when they are not young any more and how their lives have changed. In short, I can say it is kind of character study from start to end (as characters grow at every segment of the movie like in the beginning they are in hostel having fun, partying and all, working, then get married, become mother and then later stage when one is successful but not that lucky in love, other lucky in love others having mixed life). Acting by the main character is very good and believable as fun loving girl, traditional at times, working women (working in factory with men's and even better at her job than others, she even repairs the machines), mother, and at the end lover. Other casts too are good and works well. Direction is good too. I think the reason for me liking this movie is its simplicity, in the story, the way it is presented; in down to earth characters one someone can relate to easily. So if you like such movies then you might like this one. Watch it.
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8/10
More than an entertaining film
VR25 February 2005
Warning: Spoilers
Loved by both Russian and western audience alike,this film has often been regarded as entertaining romantic comedy and nothing more. Still,it,s a timeless story about love,friendship and the pursuit of happiness. It is the story of three girls who leave in 1957 their hometown somewhere in the remote Russian countryside for Moscow,to study and,above all,to find professional and personal fulfillment. One of them finds her happiness in marriage,another lives an ill-fated love story with famous hockey-player who eventually ends up as an alcoholic,but the most touching is the story of Katia,who,seduced and abandoned,pregnant and thrown out of university has the courage to raise her child all by her self,becoming,in twenty years,from a penniless unskilled laborer the manager of an important factory(the woman of career is almost an obsession of Soviet cinema,Katia being a sort of modern day Ninotchka). Nevertheless,in spite of her professional success,Katia is lacking,what almost every successful woman lacks:true love. As the film is a happy one,she finally meets a cultivated and good-looking worker(a propagandistic&proletarian bias)excellently acted by the brilliant and attractive Andrej Batalow,this man becoming more than simple infatuation to her,being devoted,caring and protective like a husband(even if they aren't married). All in all,the story is credibly optimistic,the actresses are extremely good-looking,the settings are elegant and the language witty and picturesque-in the Russian way,that is. Therefore,worth watching.
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10/10
A wondrous Novella to inspire others
Vivaelhotelplaza200529 October 2005
Warning: Spoilers
Films from a Communist nation can be Propaganda, but this is a Fairy Tale and Novella in the idea of so many Mexican Telenovellas that have been shown in Russia. This Film deserved its Oscar, and Vera Alentova as Katya is wonderful, let alone her being a beautiful Lady.

The story begins in Moskva "Moscow" in 1958, and Katya is a student who failed her Finals, and her roommates are Lyudmila and Antonia. This story talks about the decisions that they made at a young life and how they haunted them, as Katya came out Pregnant and Lyudmila married a future Drunk who still cling ed on to her even after they divorced. Antonia married and had children, when Katya raised her daughter Alexandra alone, but longed a relationship. She finds it in a man named Gosha, and falls madly in love with him, but they get into a Fight and for a matter of days Katya is desperate to find him. Antonia's husband finds Gosha, and become the finest of friends, with it ending happily for Katya as her Knight in Shining Armor stays with her forever.

The songs are wonderful and the actresses of Irina Muravyova { who played Lyudmila} and Raisa Rayazanova{ who played Antonia} were amazing. The Film has many scenes of Moskva in many parts of the residential parts of the city, as well as the countryside.

When I think of this Film and as wild as this is, I think of various Bryan Adams songs, for his idea of Songwrighting is romantic and Blues saturated. Russia is a land of Blues through and through, for especially today, Moskva can be as mean as Chicago, and Saint Petersburg is the same, despite their beauty, for Chicago is also beautiful, but cruel; and the trials and tribulations of the three Girls in the story, are a perfect setting for Adams' Songs.
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8/10
Entertaining as well as an interesting look at life in the late Brezhnev era
Andres Salama30 May 2015
Warning: Spoilers
This Oscar winning Russian film from 1979 begins the action in 1958, when we get to know three young women, who have come from the provinces to study in Moscow and are now living in a student's residence. While they are studying, they work in blue collar, factory jobs, but dream of escaping that life by marrying some powerful men. When a professor asks them to take care of his nice apartment while he's traveling, they see this as a perfect opportunity to impersonate women of higher status than they are and woo some eligible man into the apartment. One of the girls woos a famous athlete, another named Katya (who eventually becomes the center of the movie and is played by the beautiful Vera Alentova) gets involved with a cameraman in the then new medium of television. Eventually, Katya gets pregnant from the encounter with him, and when he realizes that she is a factory girl instead of a professor's daughter, decides to have nothing to do with her (he is in part afraid of the rejection of his snobbish mother, and the subtext of this, of course, is that the Soviet Union was far from a classless society). She thinks about aborting her baby, but eventually gives birth to a daughter and decides to raise her alone.

The movie then cuts to twenty years later. While her friends have married but remain trapped in a drab, working class life, Katya has remained single but has prospered professionally. She is now a director in a factory (a prestigious job in Soviet times) and lives in a nice apartment with her daughter, who is now a young woman. Despite her professional success, Katya is still looking for love, though she usually ends up in doomed affairs (for instance, when she gets involved with a married man). Eventually, she finds a promising prospect with Gosha, a masculine blue collar worker she finds on the train. But just when the relationship starts to develop, the long forgotten cameraman reappears in her life.

One of the interesting things of this movie is to get a glimpse of Soviet life at the late Brezhnev era, a time of relative prosperity… Sometimes the director goes for the easy reaction of the public, and modern audiences might not always approve of some of the cultural mores. But this is an interesting and entertaining film if somewhat overlong (two hours and a half).
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7/10
I believe it's worth watching
hte-trasme6 June 2014
Warning: Spoilers
This won the Best Foreign Film Academy Award and it has received a lot of very high plaudits here. I didn't like it quite as much as would justify all that enthusiasm -- but I did like it.

It's a sweet story, touchingly told, with very good acting from all involved. Because it's presented in two parts which, when combined, make for a fairly long movie, it has time not only to follow its characters but to develop themes -- prominent being that of the loneliness of people in the big city and the sometimes unwise things they do to relieve it.

Because of the wise scope it moves slowly, but that and the effective device of setting in two distant times allows for the payoff of some affecting moments in the second half.

While it's nominally a drama-comedy, it means more on the side of drama, and sometimes feels almost novelist in its wide scope. It was also interesting to see how it addressed various aspects of the social implications of the introduction of television and the social effects of income disparity in the two times. But overall personally I found myself more appreciative than enthusiastic.
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You cannot imagine how good the life was in USSR!!!
The Movie is splendid.

Well paced, classic filming stile, doesn't look old. All problems are fresh still. A very good example of non-Hollywood movie.

Just look at it like an example of an ordinary life in USSR. No wars, no racial problems, everybody were brothers/sisters, money did not mean a thing (cause everybody had almost the same salary)!!!.Paradise!!!

Russians were sure that they lived in the best country in the world and that everybody abroad are poor exploited people. (You know, after living myself 6 years outside of Russia, I can tell you that they were absolutely right).

You can see Gosha as a sexist, but do not forget, he is like that only on surface. He follows old Russian code of HONOUR.

I REALLY envy those people who lived in the USSR.
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10/10
A good story that break the barrier of political ideology
zzmale1 December 2003
This film was aired in China during the 1980's, when China and former-USSR was still bitter enemies due to political ideological split, yet, the story is good enough to break such barriers in political ideology and aired in China. Of course, the original intend of Chinese government was to use this film to demonize former-USSR by presenting the problems in Soviet society, but it turned out the Chinese audience was rather sympathetic to the protagonist and hated the sexist pig.
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Soviet Chick Flick?
August19914 October 2003
I first saw this film in Sri Lanka at a Soviet Cultural Centre. At the end, to be polite, I told a Soviet Embassy staffer, "You Russians make better French films than the French." (This is a good film, but it's European, jerky and the plot takes second place to people gossiping, like in an Eric Rohmer movie.) Then I naively asked, "Is the Soviet Union like that?"

Huh? This film bears as much resemblance to Soviet Russia as 'Midnight Cowboy' resembles America. It became controversial because it accepted officially that a woman's life in the Soviet Union was not perfect. Duh?

Nevertheless, the music at the beginning is great (Alexandra, Alexandra...) and the film is simply good fun, if you're curious about Soviet life. Any Russian born in Soviet times will enjoy it. If you have an older Russian visiting, and you want to be a good host, mention this film or make it available. A cure for homesickness. In 100 years, will Russians (or anyone else) watch this film? Maybe, but I suspect that a Russian, film-making Emile Zola will appear between now and then. And anyway, there are better film records of Soviet life.
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8/10
Sensitivity, in a good russian way
RResende27 August 2002
The first thing I got from this movie was its honesty. I think this is a pure piece of cinema and I don't know if this is true, but I suspect the movie shows exactly what the director meant to (and that's why I say it is honest).

I am from Portugal, therefore a western, and so there were some attitudes and things in the characters lives that I found at first strange and inadequate, even 23 years ago, and so this movie was a good document for me to understand a bit more of the great russian people.

The movie debates many questions, moral questions, social questions, inserted in a different society from mine, which presents diferent solutions and different postures in front of the problems. So we have the typical case of the single mother, with all her difficulties to be accepted and to suceed. But the message of the film comes in the end. She doesn't do what the public would like her to do, which would be either to remain single or to marry only if she really loved the husband and him to her. She doesn't do that. She marries in the end a man who is not what we might call an ideal man, quite far from that. He is a machist guy, who what's to rule her wife. But maybe that's the true happiness for her (since she spend a hole life alone, fighting against rejection for being alone with a child, maybe she now just wants to enjoy a married life, to do now what was the concept of a normal life when she was young). Or maybe not... Maybe she has just stopped fighting and left herself into the hands of a man who, not being perfect, is at least a man. There is a third option, which is what I think it's right: she loved the man (she even said he had no bad things), and he loved her (the machism and the attitude are due to society, we maight say...), and so, in this case, this would be a love story, very sensitive, in my opinion, but a different love story. Still other ways of seeing the meaning of the movie should be accepted (the true piece of art is the one which allows herself to be interpreted in inumerous ways...).

I also noticed the very interesting contrast between the three girls, among which the first one to marry seemed to have the more regular and happy life of all. The other girl, who married the sportsman, didn't suceed and seems to have a decadent life in her middle age. Then we have the main character, who has already been spoken.

Also an excelent not to the soundtrack... and this the way a post cold war portuguese educated person sees this movie...8/10
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8/10
The last half of the film makes up for the first--so stick with it.
MartinHafer13 November 2011
Warning: Spoilers
I did not love "Moscow Does Not Believe in Tears" but did like it and appreciate it. I am confused, however, that it is apparently the second biggest Russian film ever according to IMDb--it didn't seem THAT good. Regardless, it's a film where the second half if MUCH better than the first and so my advice is to stick with it--it's worth the lengthy running time.

The film begins in 1958. Three women share a tiny single room in a dormitory for folks working lower-paying jobs. Two of the ladies take a vacation, of sorts, to a nice fashionable apartment--they are apartment sitting. During this time, they make a fateful decision--they pretend that they are higher-class ladies. Soon they attract a couple men who think they are professional ladies--not women from blue-collar jobs. When one of them, Katia, becomes pregnant and her working-class roots are exposed, the man refuses to marry her and they go their separate ways.

About 20 years pass. Katia has a daughter and she never has married. Her prospects for love are bleak--especially since she now has risen way up the ranks and it's even harder for a successful career woman to attract a man. What will happen next? Tune in and see.

Overall, this is a very good film that unfolds VERY slowly. It's a film you've just gotta stick with, as the acting and eventually the story pay off. Worth seeing...but the second highest grossing Russian film?!
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9/10
Astonishing
DEMAS DEMAS20 November 2010
Warning: Spoilers
The given film, one of the most favourite films at my mum. It is a lot of years, I didn't give it many value, yet haven't learned that such Oscar and for what give it. The film describes destiny of the woman at which all life has gone head over heels, I advise to watch this film to people who had similar turning-points in life. Vladimir Menshov's work has shaken me, after all many American people think that Russia represents one drunks, bears and caps with ear-flaps. Why Russia became object of similar sneers? Remember Norway, Germany, after all they had the same in those of year, a vivid example to that a film "Life of others" (2005). I consider the given film good not only because of respect for the great country, Russia, but also because of ingenious game of actors and an unforgettable history of the unfortunate women living after Lenin revolution.
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