A sympathetic, emotionally persuasive drama describing the friendship of four World War II veterans, their sudden reunion after 25 years and the subsequent effect of this occasion upon ...
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Ilya Semenovich Melnikov is a history teacher in an ordinary Soviet high school. He is a very good teacher and his students and colleagues treat him with a great deal of respect. However, ... See full summary »
Three men vacation on a deserted beach near The Black Sea, trying to get away from women and society. However, two women arrive and try to claim the vacation spot as their own. The groups scheme to run each other off the beach.
Lyudmila doesn't have any luck in finding the perfect job. She tried to be an air hostess, newscaster, model, ice skater, but fate had something else in store for her - a petrol station, ... See full summary »
An old detective does not want to retire, especially if the reason for his retire is to free a place for stupid young "promoted-by-the-tops" guy. The only way out is to convince the boss ... See full summary »
Platon Ryabinin, a pianist, is traveling by train to a distant town of Griboedov to visit his father. He gets off to have lunch during a twenty minute stop at Zastupinsk railway station. He... See full summary »
The members of a Soviet cooperative have pooled their money to have a badly needed parking garage built. But it turns out that the garage will have four fewer spaces than planned. In brutal... See full summary »
A sympathetic, emotionally persuasive drama describing the friendship of four World War II veterans, their sudden reunion after 25 years and the subsequent effect of this occasion upon their thoughts and evaluations of the past and present.
This film is about war veterans, how Russian life wears them out much too quickly and their attempts to cope with it, sticking to memories and old friendship. (Not to mention drinking vast quantities of vodka but that's something to be expected.)
After the enormous accomplishment of winning the war against a very determined and better prepared enemy, Russians finally lost the peace - - this is something we all know by now. But in 1971 it was not foreseen by most people, so this is quite surprising to see, how clearly "Belorussian Railway Station" knew and has shown it all. It depicts quite clearly, how doomed the Soviet economy was, due to the unbelievable levels of incompetence among leaders (big and small) and a very inflexible bureaucracy, powers even war heroes could not overcome.
Well, this is old news and "Vokzal" is very slow, even by 1970s standard. But if you have the necessary patience and you can enjoy a theatrical play, it is worth seeing once for the great acting. All the five protagonists are very good, although Safonov is strangely underused. (The other three males are characterized in detail, therefore I feel he should have been, too. I really wonder why his personal background is missing, was that part censored or simply cut out because the film turned out to be too long?) Leonov is clearly the best, as usual, and Nina Urgant managed to be unforgettable, lovely and very authentic, although her role was kind of auxiliary, her character less elaborate than the others.
The film missed, in my opinion, some opportunities: more Okudzhava songs, for example. (He wrote some great ones about soldiers not finding their places in peace.) And there is a view, a dangerous tunnel with rotting pipes under a peacefully sleeping housing estate, that could have been much more memorable, highly symbolic and maybe even one of the great moments of cinema, if cinematography would have been great and not only adequate.
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