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Brother (1997)

Brat (original title)
An ex-soldier with a personal honor code enters the family crime business in St. Petersburg, Russia.

Director:

Aleksey Balabanov
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8 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sergey Bodrov ... Danila Bagrov
Viktor Sukhorukov ... Viktor Bagrov
Svetlana Pismichenko Svetlana Pismichenko ... Sveta
Mariya Zhukova Mariya Zhukova ... Kat
Yuriy Kuznetsov ... German
Vyacheslav Butusov Vyacheslav Butusov ... Butusov
Irina Rakshina Irina Rakshina ... Zinka
Sergey Murzin Sergey Murzin ... Krugly
Anatoliy Zhuravlyov Anatoliy Zhuravlyov ... Nervous Bandit
Igor Shibanov Igor Shibanov ... Militiaman
Andrey Fedortsov ... Styopa
Sergey Debizhev Sergey Debizhev ... Sergey Debizhev (as Sergey Debezhev)
Aleksei Sevostyanov
Rinat Ibragimov Rinat Ibragimov ... (as Renat Ibragimov)
Vladimir Ermilov Vladimir Ermilov
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Storyline

Newly discharged from the army, Danila goes to his older brother - a gangster and a killer - to start a new life in St. Petersburg where he's soon situated in the criminal world and asked to kill someone. There his new life starts. He meets new people, including a girl, and becomes a big fan of the rock band "Nautilus Pompillius," but now he is a killer, and realizing killing is easier for him than living makes him understand he is going the wrong way. Written by Max Volovik <dimaa@worldnet.att.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

Official site [Russia]

Country:

Russia

Language:

Russian | English | French

Release Date:

8 July 1998 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Brother See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Goofs

When Kruglij talks to Sveta for the first time, the camera is reflected in the windscreen of the tram that Sveta is driving. See more »

Quotes

[last lines]
Truck Driver: So where are you going?
Danila: Moscow.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Generation P (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Letuchiy Fregat
Written by Vyacheslav Butusov
Arranged by Yegor Belkin
Performed by Nastya Poleva (as Nastya)
Played on the rock concert tape that Danila watches
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Russians!
17 May 2010 | by dave-sturmSee all my reviews

You will be marinated in Russian-ness after watching this gritty crime drama shot in St. Petersburg. Set in the early 1990s after the fall of Soviet communism, it's a movie whose co-star is the place. The crime and gunplay in the foreground, which cropped up after the collapse of stern authority, seems to perfectly match what we see in the background -- trash-strewn streets, grimy flats, drug-fueled nightclubs. Everyone is poor or barely getting by. Even the gangsters, who you'd think would have some Scarface-type perks, seem to live in squalor.

One thing that will instantly strike you is how everyone in the movie looks like someone you know, not a Hollywood star. I want to call particular attention to Svetlana Pismichenko, the film's love interest, who plays the driver of a streetcar that hauls lumber (?). She's not pretty at all, but you see the love she is capable of and, all I can say is I wish she were my girlfriend. Her last scene is one of the most memorable portraits of heartbreak I have ever seen. She has incredible eyes.

Sergei Bodrov plays the lead, a soldier just back from Chechnya who is drawn into his brother's gangland activities. We never see a flashback of what happened over there and, when asked by others in the film what he did, grins and said he was a clerk in HQ. As we come to see the fearlessness and ruthlessness he is capable of, it is obvious he is lying. This man is steel tempered in a furnace. His gangster enemies are no match for a man with his willingness to prepare for and face death.

I've never been to Russia, but I lived in the Czech Republic for three years and I can testify to the authenticity of this movie's backdrop. When the Iron Curtain fell, it revealed decaying rust belt cities, but also a tough-minded population of attractive and spirited people who, somehow, found ways to be happy in tough times. I am American and half Polish, and this movie made me proud to be a Slav.

A scene in the movie is a homage to Russian good cheer. It is a party in a Russian flat where a few dozen people are chatting, eating, smoking pot, drinking vodka, singing along to a guitar, shooting pool and having fun. They're all young people in their 20's. You'll wish you were at that party.


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