1-World Festival of Foreign Films
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"Ballad of a Soldier"
1960
Directed by Grigori Chukhrai

Grigori Chukhrai's view of  war  as seen through the eyes of a young Russian soldier.  The film is one of the major works of post-war Russian cinema, detailing  a soldier's earnest seduction of a country girl while visiting his mother.  The film deftly captures the dread, pain and humiliation of war, and its effects on the people.  "The picture flows in such a swift poetic way that the tragedy of it is concealed by a gentle lyric quality" (New York Times)  With Vladimir Ivashov and Shanna Prokhorenko. Russian with English subtitles. Black and white.  89 minutes.


Guest Comments

From:  "Chrissey Fox"

"I first saw this film when I was 11 years old. Films never make me cry, but this one made the tears come. I never saw this film again until last year when I was 52. I was surprised to find it on the internet. I was interested and anxious to find out why this film so unnerved me at such a young age. I have never seen a review mention that the soldier in the film was such a caring person to the point that he cared for others putting him in a situation where he could only see his mother for a moment before returning to the front. He spent almost the 2 day time off caring and comforting others risking his very own time with his Mother. This is huge. He was a giver, and he gave his last precious free moments which was a personal sacrifice. I connected with this at a young age, perhaps because as I became older, my life was that way for 33 years, caring for sick and downtrodden relatives. I must have had some type of recognition of shades of things to come but the path was already inside, that of taking care of others and most offen not myself. Thank you for allowing me to review this. Even after 42 years, and before viewing the movie once again, I could still see the faces of the soldier, the young woman love interest, and the Mother waiting, waiting. It is a powerful movie of the human condition."

 


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