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© RIA Novosti. Pavel Lisitsyn

Russia's Silent Souls make a big noise at Venice Film Fest

by at 07/09/2010 16:47

Russian film Silent Souls, competing for Venice film festival’s main prize received a 12-minute standing ovation from the audience.

Alexei Fedorchenko’s latest work (its Russian title is Ovsyanki – Buntings) received a 12 minute standing ovation from the audience at the first showing as part of competition at the 67th Venice Film Festival. Quentin Tarantino, the festival’s head of jury, was among those who jumped off their seats at the end of the screening. The showings of Silent Souls attracting crowds and the critical response is positive, making it a serious contender for the Best Film prize.

Silent Souls is a road-movie telling a story of the factory chief who takes his friend and two buntings he bought on a trip to give his deceased wife a made-up Finno-Urgic tribe ritual burial, telling the story of their relationship on the way through flashbacks.

It is Fedorchenko’s second participation in the Venice film festival. The first film by the Yekaterinburg director First on the Moon fooled the jury and was awarded the best documentary prize at that festival, even though it was a mockumentary telling the story of how Soviet people were the first on the moon in 1938.

Silent Souls was made on private money as Fedorchenko said that he applied to the ministry of culture with the script, but they thought the picture pornographic and refused, he told Komsomolskaya Pravda.

Russian films in Venice

The festival’s alternative programme Orizzonti will also feature three Russian radical art-house projects: Galina Myznikova and Sergey Provorov’s Voodushevlenie (Inspiration), Victor Alimpiev’s Slabyj Rot Front (Weak Rot Front) and Rustam Khamdamov’s Brilianty (Diamonds).

Russian films have received the main prize at one of the most renowned film festivals three times. In 1962 Andrei Tarkovsky’s My Name is Ivan, in 1991 Nikita Mikhalkov’s Close to Eden and in 2003 Andrei Zvyagintsev’s The Return received two Golden Lions for best film and best debut.

The Golden Lions are to be awarded on Saturday.

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