Georges and Anne are an octogenarian couple. They are cultivated, retired music teachers. Their daughter, also a musician, lives in Britain with her family. One day, Anne has a stroke, and the couple's bond of love is severely tested.
A married couple are faced with a difficult decision - to improve the life of their child by moving to another country or to stay in Iran and look after a deteriorating parent who has Alzheimer's disease.
Russian screenwriter and director Alexandr Sokurov's fifteenth feature film which he wrote, is a loose adaptation of the classic German legend "Faust" by German writer and poet Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832). It premiered In competition at the 68th Venice Film Festival in 2011, was shot on location in Spain and Iceland and produced by Russian composer and producer Andrey Sigle. It tells the story about scholar Heinrich Faust, a man with a great hunger for knowledge. Heinrich is not pleased with his mundane life, but when allured by Mephistopheles he becomes enchanted by a woman named Margarete.
This character-driven and dialog-driven voyage into the human psyche has a stringently structured narrative with continuous dialog and is an atmospheric, dramatic and visually exceptional movie experience which is distinctly directed by a masterful director who creates versatile perspectives and invigorating scenes with his characteristic use of colors and soft focus. His detailed period piece takes place in the Harz mountain chain of Northern Germany between the Weser and Elbe Rivers during the 19th century and contains adventurous milieu depictions which are complimented by Elena Zhukova's ardent production design and French cinematographer Bruno Delbonnel's noticeable cinematography.
This wandering, philosophical and in-depth study of character about a man who makes a life-altering compromise for the sake of knowledge, is significantly reinforced by the marvellous use of light and the engaging acting performances by Austrian actor Johannes Zeiler, Russian actor Anton Adasinskiy and the understated acting performance by Russian actress Isolda Dychauk in her second feature film role. The fourth and final part of Alexandr Sokurov's tetralogy about the nature of power and how it influences man, was preceded by "Moloch" (1999), "Telets" (2001) and "The Sun" (2005). It gained, among other awards, the Golden Lion at the 68th Venice Film Festival in 2011.
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