The nature of violence. 15+ home movies – detailed portal POLIT.RU

It has been almost two months since the start of the special operation in Ukraine. The level of tension in Russian society continues to rise. Polit.ru film critic Kirill Safronov has put together another selection of films that expose the nature of violence, because he is sure that as soon as we begin to see a demon in another person, we leave distilled evil in our souls. Evil, which in art can sometimes seem attractive, but in life is always (always!) Disgusting.

Ivan the Terrible (Sergei Eisenstein, 1944)

The story of the life and madness of one of the most memorable Russian tsars. The script was personally approved by Stalin, the shooting took place in an evacuation (in Alma-Ata), the director did not have time to complete the third part.

Oprichnina’s lawlessness, the endless search for enemies inside the country, the crown that Ivan, contrary to tradition, puts on his head … Sounds crazy, but all this is no less relevant today than during shooting.

It should be watched by all those who feel sympathy for all kinds of media characters who advertise the image of a “strong hand”, which is supposed to be necessary for our peace and prosperity.

Unfinished piece for mechanical piano (Nikita Mikhalkov, 1977)

A story about how hard Chekhov’s characters can be, eroded by their provincial grievances and drowning out their own insignificance with irrational chatter. The fact that, even at the edge of an existential abyss, they will blame anyone but themselves for their suffering.

The authors took based on the work “Fatherlessness” (“Platonov”), but also used individual motives and situations from the story “Teacher of Literature”, the stories “Three Years”, “My Life” and some other works by Chekhov. It is amazing how N.S. Mikhalkov from the director of this film turned into one of his characters.

All those who believe that the tyranny in the daily relations of people who know how to read and write appeared in our country only after the October Revolution.

Repentance (Tengiz Abuladze, 1984)

A story about fear, complaints, repression … The film was shot before the perestroika, in 1984, and was released in 1987. The same year it won the Grand Prix at the Cannes Film Festival.

It should be watched by all those who do not really understand the political scientists who claim that until de-communalization and elimination in Russia, we should not expect anything good.

Kill the Dragon (Mark Zakharov, 1988)

An amazing story about the destructive properties of power for the human soul, written by Evgeny Schwartz 10 years before the appearance of The Lord of the Rings with his Gollum (remember – “My Charm”?).

It should be watched by all those who believe that all the problems of modern Russia are connected with only one person.

Power Solovetskaya (Marina Goldovskaya, 1988)

A documentary-journalistic film about the Solovetsky Islands, turned by the Cheka-OGPU-NKVD into a concentration camp for the enemies of the people. In 1989, director Marina Goldovskaya received the Commission’s Special Recognition Award for this film at the main independent film festival, Sundance.

ELEPHANT. The Solovetsky Special Purpose Camp is the Gulag prototype. In Solovki came the idea of ​​using prisoners as free labor. Hence the word “friends” (known by the verb “friends” – avoiding work) – “a fictional person with a disability in a special purpose camp”. This was the name given to people who made themselves disabled (say, cut off their fingers) to go to the doctor’s office and avoid unbearable hard work.

All those who do not know what to look for is the saying “Here power is not Soviet, here power is Solovki”.

Three stories (Kira Muratova, 1997)

The film consists of three short stories, the plot of which is based on crime stories that go beyond the usual logic of a police story. In any case, the killers are people who at first glance are completely incapable of it.

If in traditional, more or less understandable cinema, the author sets many worlds through which the characters travel (say, war-peace, life-death, new-old), then Kira Muratova in Three Stories mercilessly depicts the post-Soviet reality in which life costs absolutely nothing. The killer can be domestic, serial, spontaneous – the main thing is that it is. And the killer will kill. There are two options: the killer or the victim. Everything else – gender, age, education, logic, motivation – is completely insignificant in such a world. A very scary movie.

A must watch for anyone ready for the “Oberiut” style of a 90s story.

Khrustalev, car (Alexei German, 1998)

Unusually icy February 1953. The action begins the day Stalin became paralyzed. Against the background of the “doctors’ case”, an eccentric picture of life in the house of the General of the Medical Service Yuri Klenski appears. Although he drinks brandy in tea cups, he can only feel threatened, especially after meeting his doppelgänger in the hospital. As duplicates have been used by state security in trials, Klensky understands that he is the next target in the “doctors case”.

You may also remember other Alexei German films, almost all of which deal with violence (“Check on the Roads”, “My Friend Ivan Lapshin”, “It’s Hard to Be a God”).

Anyone interested in what elites are like in dark times must be careful.

Moloch (Alexander Sokurov, 1999)

The first film in the quartet “Moloch” – “Bull” – “Sun” – “Faust”. A story about how bored old people who think they are gods die. The film takes place in an impregnable house built in the Alps for a man of power. The power, which claims to conquer the whole world, did a disastrous job, first of all, on those who personified it: Adolf Hitler and Eva Brown are irreconcilable collaborators in a love drama.

You can also remember the films of Alexander Sokurov’s students (“Closeness” by Kantemir Balagov, “Detachable fists” by Kira Kovalenko, “Mom, I’m at home” by Vladimir Bitokov).

Anyone interested in what a love affair based solely on violence should look like should pay attention.

Shrove Thursday (Alexander Rastorguev, 2003)

Not far from Grozny, on the side railway tracks, there is an old locomotive, to which many wagons are connected. The locomotive gives off steam – there is hot water in the boilers and a bath is equipped in the cars, where soldiers and officers wash and wash sheets. A bath is an opportunity not only to wash, but also to purify the soul. Constant hasty conversation, in which the righteous and the sinner are mixed, swearing and motherhood, domestic and bravura military nonsense, truth and boyish boasting … The salty jokes are interspersed with confessional stories about what is happening in Chechnya. Everyone who enters the war will come out of it a different person.

A film by one of the most talented Russian documentary filmmakers who was killed during filming in the Central African Republic in 2018. The image is significant, as it did not become a deep and large-scale reflection of the Chechen wars in our cinema.

Anyone interested in what the boys are saying in the war in the bathroom should watch.

Morphine (Alexey Balabanov, 2008)

Drama written by Sergei Bodrov, Jr., based on Mikhail Bulgakov’s cycle “Notes of a Young Doctor” and the story “Morphine”. About how easy it is to become an enemy of people in the dark ages of history. Sergei Bodrov himself had to play the lead role, but he did died in Karmadon Gorge in 2002.

You can also remember other films by Alexei Balabanov, all in one way or another – about violence (“About Freaks and People”, “War”, “Cargo 200” – it would be more honest to play it now in Russian cinemas , and not “Brother”).

Anyone who believes that the strategy of oblivion will save him should watch it.

Yuryev Den (Kirill Serebrennikov, 2008)

Before leaving for a permanent residence in Germany, a famous opera singer brings her son to the Russian region to say goodbye to her homeland. For her, these places are beautiful romance and poems by Russian poets. The son leaves to watch the local Kremlin report and disappears.

It should be watched by all those who do not really understand the political scientists who claim that while two “different peoples” live in Russia at the same time, we should not expect anything good.

She used to be a woman (Andrey Smirnov, 2011)

The film tells the story of a Russian village in 1909-1921 through the fate of Tabov’s peasant woman, Barbara. She gets married, remains a widow, tries to arrange her personal life. At the same time, historical events are unfolding: the First World War, the October Revolution, the Civil War and the Tambov uprising. Spatial Russia resembles the city of Kitezh, which slowly but inevitably sinks into the water.

Anyone interested should imagine how their recent ancestors lived.

Live (Vasily Sigarev, 2011)

The plot of the film is based on three parallel stories, the heroes of which face the most difficult ordeal in life – the loss of loved ones. A little boy loses his father, a young girl loses a loved one and a middle-aged woman loses her twin daughters. Each story has its own end, everyone chooses for himself how to endure misfortune. All three lines are presented against the background of modern life abroad in Russia, with the most intense domestic and social problems of modern Russia.

Everyone is now deciding for themselves the question “How to live further?” must be monitored.

I do not like it (Andrey Zvyagintsev, 2017)

The story is about the fact that “where there is fear, there is no room for love”. Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival.

A family from Moscow is experiencing a painful divorce. After another quarrel between the parents, their child disappears.

Anyone who does not live in a hermitage communicates with people, but for some reason thinks that he is probably a good and exemplary person, should watch it.

Goodbye to Stalin (Sergey Loznitsa, 2019)

This documentary is based on unique archival footage shot in the USSR on March 5-9, 1953.

You may also remember Sergei Loznitsa’s other films (documentaries: “Portrait”, “Block”, “Maidan”, “Trial”, “Babi Yar”, “Donbass”; feature films: “My Happiness”, “Gentle” and so on.).

It should be watched by all those who believe that what is happening today will never end. It will be over. And how!

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