Envisioning Russia: A Century of Filmmaking

10/10/08 to 10/30/08

Classics by masters from Eisenstein to Tarkovsky; little-seen genre gems; fabulously kitschy relics of the Soviet era-all are part of the panorama of Russian cinema presented in this eclectic survey.

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  • Sadko, October 12

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Past Films

  • Elegy of Life: Rostropovich, Vishnevskaya

    • Thursday, October 30 6:30 PM

    Aleksandr Sokurov's deeply felt tribute to a remarkable musical partnership: cellist-conductor Mstislav Rostropovich and his wife, opera diva Galina Vishnevskaya.

  • Alexandra

    • Thursday, October 30 8:30 PM

    Sokurov stuns the senses, depicting humanity at its fiercest and finest, personified by the titular grandmother journeying through wartorn Chechnya. Galina Vishnevskaya stars.

  • The New Moscow

    • Wednesday, October 29 8:30 PM

    “Eye-popping amalgamation of country comedy, musical romance, and science fiction. . . . Alexandr Medvedkin shocks through the sheer audacity of his project.”-Richard Peña

  • Happiness

    • Wednesday, October 29 7 PM

    Judith Rosenberg on Piano. What happens when a slacker is invited to join a farming collective? “A dark and funny assault on peasant-class pieties.”-N.Y. Sun

  • The Russian Question

    • Saturday, October 25 8:45 PM

    Mikhail Romm's vintage Cold War film about a pro-Moscow American journalist is enlivened by its humanity, and a score by Aram Khachaturian.

  • The Mirror

    • Friday, October 24 6:30 PM

    The most poetic and inventive of Russian directors, Andrei Tarkovsky, sketches his youth through dream images of a young boy who is hypnotized in a clinic.

  • Bed and Sofa

    • Wednesday, October 22 7 PM

    Judith Rosenberg on Piano. With its humor and naturalism, Avram Room's intimate drama dealing with a ménage à trois brought about by a housing shortage appears modern even today.

  • Jewish Luck

    • Sunday, October 19 1:30 PM

    Judith Rosenberg on Piano. Sholem Aleichem's classic is brought to the screen in an extraordinary meeting of Russian-Jewish talent.

  • Uncle Vanya

    • Sunday, October 19 3:30 PM

    Konchalovsky's adaptation of Chekhov's play, “a comedy that moves to the cadences of tragedy.”-Albert Johnson

  • The Cranes Are Flying

    • Saturday, October 18 6:30 PM

    Mikhail Kalatozov's stunningly visualized drama of young love and ambition destroyed by war, a key work of the post-Stalin era.

  • The Letter Never Sent

    • Saturday, October 18 8:30 PM

    Also by Kalatozov, “the most profound examination of man against nature ever filmed. It took a Russian to do it well.”-Dennis Jakob

  • Tractor Drivers

    • Thursday, October 16 6:30 PM

    This musical prototype for the girl-boy-tractor romances “begins as a deceptively easygoing trifle, by the end becoming a reminder that with World War II in sight, tanks would soon replace tractors.”-N.Y. Sun

  • Carnival Night

    • Thursday, October 16 8:20 PM

    This deliciously witty 1956 comedy showed that, even in Stalin's Russia, kids just want to rock 'n' roll.

  • Sadko

    • Sunday, October 12 3 PM

    Sinbad's voyage is transformed by one of the great poets of fantasy filmmaking, Alexander Ptushko.

  • The Battleship Potemkin

    • Friday, October 10 6:30 PM

    Judith Rosenberg on Piano. Sergei Eisenstein's classic can be appreciated for “not only the perfection of its form, but the humanitarianism and enthusiasm that impregnated its revolutionary subject.”-Georges Sadoul

  • The Ascent

    • Friday, October 10 8:20 PM

    In Larissa's Shepitko's masterpiece, the partisan struggle against the Nazis in WWII provides the setting for a tale of morality and martyrdom. “A profoundly moving experience.”-Filmex '78