Russkiy kovcheg (2002) - Plot Summary Poster

Plot Summary

  • An unseen man regains consciousness, not knowing who or where he is. No one seems to be able to see him, except the mysterious man dressed in black. He eventually learns through their discussions that this man is a 19th century French aristocrat, who he coins the "European". This turn of events is unusual as the unseen man has a knowledge of the present day. The two quickly learn that they are in the Winter Palace of the Hermitage in St. Petersburg, the European who has a comprehensive knowledge of Russian history to his time. As the two travel through the palace and its grounds, they interact with people from various eras of Russian history, either through events that have happened at the palace or through the viewing of artifacts housed in the museum. Ultimately, the unseen man's desired journey is to move forward, with or without his European companion.

    - Written by Huggo
  • A unseen man awakens, not knowing who he is or where he is from. From the clothes of those around him, he believes he is in 18th century Russia. He is apparently invisible to those around him except for one person, the man in black, who seems as lost as he is. They are in the Hermitage museum in St. Petersburg and together walk through the various rooms, entering a different era on each occasion. The man in black interacts with the people he meets there and offers a commentary on the works of art. The film is notable for having been filmed in one continuous shot.

    - Written by garykmcd
  • Told in one fluid shot, a tale which floats like a dreamlike journey through the majestic spaces of the Hermitage in St. Petersburg, engaging real and imagined characters from Russian and European history. The nameless protagonist, a 19th-century French diplomat, guides the audience through a lost, sumptuous dream that was the Enlightenment period. The film, staged among some of the Western Art tradition's greatest masterpieces, climaxes in a pageant of color, motion, and music. For Sokurov, the Hermitage--home to generations of Romonovs and repository of so much Russian history--is the ark of the Russian soul, guarding it affectionately until the world sees better days.

    - Written by Sujit R. Varma
  • A 19th century French aristocrat, notorious for his scathing memoirs about life in Russia, travels through the Russian State Hermitage Museum and encounters historical figures from the last 200+ years.

    - Written by IMDb Editors


Despite the almost inevitable longueurs, not to mention mumbling melancholy offscreen comments that sometimes verge on the self-parodic...

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