In the Soviet Union in 1936, shadow of Stalin's repressions lie on a famous revolution hero. The accusations of being him a foreign spy are nonsense, and all known that, but a slow process of his life's downfall is already running.
Russia, 1936: revolutionary hero Colonel Kotov is spending an idyllic summer in his village with his young wife and six-year-old daughter Nadia and other assorted family and friends. Things change dramatically with the unheralded arrival of Cousin Dmitri from Moscow, who charms the women and little Nadia with his games and pianistic bravura. But Kotov isn't fooled: this is the time of Stalin's repression, with telephone calls in the middle of the night spelling doom - and he knows that Dmitri isn't paying a social call...Written by
Michael Brooke <email@example.com>
Powerful yet Subtle and Original Look at Totalitarianism
I just watched and loved this movie.
It originally portrays the contrast in character, personality, viewpoint, and the relative consequences of the Revolution upon two people -
a) Mitya, a handsome, charming, romantic, poetic, musical, child-loving man who before the movie began, lived in rural Russia, grew up with a girl who was 7 when he was conscripted into World War I, and deeply loved her parents, cousins, aunts, uncles and the household servants, and
b) Kotov, an older man, military, probably more courageous and less intelligent, bluff and physical, sentimental and less artistic, stronger but simpler, equally child-loving, from a poorer background.
Enemies in the Revolution, their behavior toward each other begins with cruelty by Kotov toward Mitya, Mitya's forced cruelty to others, and a changed and cruel man now (and knowing it) Mitya's cruelty to Kotov. And yes, a woman is also in the mix. The story is told as much through Kotov's eyes as through Mitya's.
And guess what? With all this cruelty, Kotov and Mitya are both people you'd love to spend the day with.
It's beautifully photographed - the same wonderful languor as watching say, Turgenev's A Month in the Country, the child is enchanting, the story is absolutely fascinating - far more original than such other "political" movies as The Conformist or The Garden of the Finzi-Continis. The movie is about social class, temperament, and how freely people make decisions in their lives, about love for the opposite sex, children, and country. It's compelling - you will truly always remember this movie.
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