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Adam's first wife Lilith is mentioned in ancient Oriental legends, in Talmud and in the medieval books of Cabala. According to these sources, she was not created from Adam's rib like Eve but from clay like he himself. Nevertheless Lilith was not recognized by Adam as his equal and left him after a quarrel heading for Babylon where pre-Adamians lived. She has no soul, and she is immortal. Lilith assumes different names, can change her appearance, and takes possession of men against their will. Once it's accomplished, she leaves her victims forever, marking them for either spiritual, or physical death. Whatever she does it is neither Good nor Evil. She is made of an altogether different matter. The story consists of three interrelated stories: "Escape" (1664, Hanseatic League); "Loss" (1883, Russian Empire/France); "Aberration Feelings" (1990, Latvia). Written by
Everything, my friend, requires deliberateness and patience - Borgraph
I am not one to submit reviews on public forums - I am merely a lover of the medium of film. However, since no review exists for this movie (for those who use IMDb critiques as viewing guidelines) I will submit mine for your perusal.
VISUAL - 2 stars. Cinematography is first-rate, the director and cinematographer having composed many of the shots as paintings, especially in the 1664 and 1883 acts. The opening sequences are Gothic horror, the romantic scenes lush and visually deep. You sense that great thought was involved in composing the look of each shot. Yet the camera did not intrude on the viewing, as often does with the jittery, hand-held style.
STORY - 1 1/2 stars. The story revolves around the torment Man subjects himself to by accepting temptation in the form of Woman, in this case the incarnation of Lilith, first wife of Adam (according to the Talmud
not stained by original sin, free from condemnation, not marred by
suffering or death, yet without a soul). Three stories exist (1664, 1883, 1990) and each portrays well the Russian viewpoint of family, culture, myth and religion. Ironically, for me at least, the most recent story (1990) was the least engaging, perhaps since we are living in the present and have no reference point for modern society.
ACTING 2 stars. Three versions of Lilith, actresses Shepitskaya, Azarova and Stepanova each give us engaging and tempting portrayals of the "night demon." Three men overcome by temptation, Haapasalo, Kozlovsky and Serebryakov are equally believable in their roles. The supporting cast is exemplary.
SOUND - 1 1/2 stars. It is always a pleasure be engaged by a soundtrack that doesn't reek of Hollywood. I find this, more than any other aspect, can discourage me from movie viewing. The dialogue (with subtitles) was coherent, the music completely appropriate for each story, save the last. Being 1990 the accompanying music could have leaned more toward a contemporary ear.
DIRECTION - 2 stars. Wonderfully crafted. I will be the first to admit that my forays into Russian film sometimes leave me disenchanted. For me there exists a certain obtuse quality in the mythos of Russian culture and its themes. And, for me, even a few of their "classics" can run on a bit too long. Not so here. Gulf Stream Under the Iceberg was very well-paced, keeping in mind the quote at the top of this review by a character in the film. Kudos to Yevgeni Pashkevich and Company!
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