Winner of a Golden Plaque award at the Chicago International Film Festival "for its complex and poetic evocation of an ambiguous period in Soviet history," Marina Razbezhkina's debut film ... See full summary »
A widowed aeronautics engineer, who has lost his job, travels with his son hopping freight trains from Moscow to Koktebel, a town by the Black Sea, to start a new life with the father's ... See full summary »
A polar station on a desolate island in the Arctic Ocean. Sergei, a seasoned meteorologist, and Pavel, a recent college graduate, are spending months in complete isolation on the once ... See full summary »
Siberia. Late autumn. In taiga, in the deserted village there lives an old man Ivan & his seven-year-old grandson Leshia. A pack of feral dogs devours everything alive in the neighborhood. ... See full summary »
Two Russian soldiers, one battle-seasoned and the other barely into his boots and uniform, are taken prisoner by an anxious Islamic father from a remote village hoping to trade them for his captured son.
Somewhere in Northern Russia in a small Russian Orthodox monastery lives an unusual man whose bizarre conduct confuses his fellow monks, while others who visit the island believe that the man has the power to heal, exorcise demons and foretell the future.
Life smiles at Dino Fabrizzi,a cool forty-two-year old Italian. Not only is he the most successful salesman at The Maserati dealership in Nice but he has had a steady (and hot) relationship... See full summary »
'The Role' is about a brilliant actor in revolutionary Russia who takes on the greatest role of his life - the role of another man. Influenced by the ideas of symbolism and the Silver Age, ... See full summary »
Vanya is a 6 year old orphan living in a rundown orphanage in a remote Russian village. For Vanya and the other children, life is without hope, unless, of course, they are adopted by wealthy foreigners. For Vanya, hope comes in the form of an Italian couple. But while arrangements are being made an incident occurs when the mother of another child appears, seeking her son. Vanya begins to wonder what would happen if his own mother reappeared, and he was living in Italy.With the assistance of older children, Vanya is able to access his records and find the possible whereabouts of his mother. He escapes and travels across the country, pursued by the adoption agents. Written by
Despite a title that hints at a modern-day stab at Italian neo-realism in the vein of The Bicycle Thieves, as others have noted, Andrei Kravchuk's The Italian plays very much like a Charles Dickens story - had Dickens been Russian and alive in the 21st century. Vanya Soltnsev (Kolya Spiridonov) is the modern-day Oliver Twist in a particularly bleak Russian orphanage run by the corrupt Madam and a weak-willed headmaster, both turning a profit on arranging adoptions for foreign couples. But when a mother who abandoned her child appears at the orphanage in a vain attempt to be reunited, he becomes obsessed with the possibility that his own mother might still want him and determines to find her in the big city - but Madam has already sold him to an Italian couple and sets off in hot pursuit...
It's a sincere film, but it doesn't quite hit home as hard as it wants to. The first half of the film paints in the details of the everyday corruption in the orphanage, where the corrupt adult administration is mirrored by an equally corrupt gang of children, but despite the grey, colourless stones it doesn't anger or outrage as much as it could. Possibly modern audiences have become slightly desensitised to this kind of material from decades of news exposes, but the first half of the film does tend to drag a little before Vanya makes his escape. It's in this section that the film really comes to life, gradually accumulating color and vitality denied the early scenes as Vanya is both helped and hindered by those he meets on his way to the big city, and it's here that the film finally starts to engage the emotions and gets you rooting for him. The ending might be a little unlikely, but Dickens certainly would have approved
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