Somewhere in Northern Russia in a small Russian Orthodox monastery lives an unusual man whose bizarre conduct confuses his fellow monks, while others who visit the island believe that the man has the power to heal, exorcise demons and foretell the future.
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After studying it in depth in order to accurately portray a priest in this film, Japanese-American actor Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa decided to convert to the Russian Orthodox faith. He was baptized on November 13, 2015, just 2 weeks before the release of the film. As a result of his conversion, he ultimately chose to become a Russian citizen. See more »
The movie is done to the point. It has quite a few impressive details and connotations, which probably will go unnoticed to the regular viewer at first sight. Like a flash of lightning behind Nelyubin. Or Nikolay's refusal to fight off the two policemen. Or the hunter's inability to shoot the bear. Or the glance in the water. Or the ending scene fading into white. It can be quite a considerable list of such happenings. No surprise, though, while a real Orthodox priest takes part in this one.
A very good example of Russian cinema. Still, one complaint from my side: the music (especially at the very end) should have been different. But this is my taste - would prefer mild choir music in this instance or even just the sounds of nature (birds singing for example). Grebenshchikov's score was great in the famous and groovy "Black Rose...", but not here. Here it sounds cheap, sorry.
Thank you for attention. A 9 out of 10.
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