Two Soviet partisans depart their starving band on a short march to a nearby farm to get supplies. The Germans have reached the farm first, so the pair must go on a journey deep into ... See full summary »
A fascinating and human portrayal of a once-famous fighter pilot and loyal Stalinist named Nadezhda Petrovna. Now a 41-year-old provincial schoolmistress, she has so internalized the ... See full summary »
Russia, 1916. Be it by craft or madness, Rasputin exercises power over the indecisive Nicholas, and the religious Czarina worships the Siberian as God. He manipulates the Czar in his relations with the Duma and influences the choice of a new premier. Rasputin assaults a baroness; her husband is jailed for defending her, and she must offer sexual favors to Rasputin to save her husband. The Czar finally orders Rasputin from St. Petersburg, but somehow he enters the palace and, in a disheveled trance, convinces the Czar to make a disastrous change in war strategy. A cadre of nobles take matters into their own hands and arrange a last dinner party for the interloping monk. Written by
The Tsarina's Lady in Waiting, Ms Vyrubova the 'Intriguante', is shown to be sauntering haughtily the entire film length, once even pushing the Tsarina's wheelchair. In fact, Vyrubova had been badly crippled in a railway accident a year before, and was herself transported in a wheelchair in 1916, or at best had to use crutches to get about (see 'Memories of the Russian Court' by herself, or other sources). See more »
I don't understand russian language and I'm not very familiar to russian history, but the events told in this film make a very strong and exciting experience. Much of this is due to Elem Klimovs very conscious use of cinematic methods. The mad monk (Rasputin) as an evil force in russian politics is portrayed with great force. Klimov seems to be one of the great cinematic poets and dramatist who can tell a story of violent and dramatic political events, and also of private and psychological conditions. The actors are first rate in every aspect and make this cruel story a memorable, thrilling and moving experience. Agoniya means of course agony, and that is what the imperial family and the political elite in Russia went trough these years. Klimov had to do some compromises, but this film is in any way a masterpiece.
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