In 16th-century Russia in the grip of chaos, Ivan the Terrible strongly believes he is vested with a holy mission. Believing he can understand and interpret the signs, he sees the Last ...
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In 16th-century Russia in the grip of chaos, Ivan the Terrible strongly believes he is vested with a holy mission. Believing he can understand and interpret the signs, he sees the Last Judgment approaching. He establishes absolute power, cruelly destroying anyone who gets in his way. During this reign of terror, Philip, the superior of the monastery on the Solovetsky Islands, a great scholar and Ivan's close friend, dares to oppose the sovereign's mystical tyranny. What follows is a clash between two completely opposite visions of the world, smashing morality and justice, God and men. A grand-scale film with excellent leading roles by Mamonov and Yankovsky. An allegory of Stalinist Russia.Written by
Warsaw Film Festival
more than a film. it is a form of visual essay about power and religion, about solitude and about the roots, laws and vision of tyranny. it is a fight against Russia's history. a parable. portrait not of Ivan Vasilievich but for a manner, an usual manner of East to use the authority with high force and profound fear. Pyotr Mamonov gives a strange, cold, unpredictable, vulnerable Ivan. a Tsar looking for himself, lost in good intentions and noble projects. but, maybe, the hero is Philip. the voice of Church and good sense. the voice of conscience in a dark circle of confusion. the Metropolit is a splendid role. the last for great Oleg Ynkovsky and that status impose a special status to it. more than a film. maybe, useful subject for reflection. about power. in our time. in each period of history.
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