How I Ended This Summer (12A)
and directed by Alexei Popogrebski
Liverpool from 29th April 2011
Opinion seems to be split on this movie: some see it as a soporific study
of ennui, while others consider it a Russian masterpiece of inner torment
in a bleak landscape; I am amongst the latter. The scene is set as both
characters do mundane chores in an arctic substation where they have to
monitor a nuclear reactor, take meteorological readings, and relay them
over the airwaves every hour.
The remote location combined with the severe weather conditions, basic
living quarters, and continual sleep deprivation conspire to create an
intense atmosphere which brings out the differences between the two protagonists
who only have each other for company: Sergei (played by Sergei Puskepalis),
the old hand who knows the job and the terrain inside out and takes it
all very seriously, and 'Pasha' who like anyone his age plays loud music
and video games to relieve the boredom.
The fact that there are only the two of them becomes even more relevant
when they fall out, and the story takes a dramatic turn. Suffice to say,
both actors did their own stunts. Grigoriy Dobrygin (Pasha) originally
trained as a ballet dancer and it shows: a star is born!
I highly recommend this movie: it is in Russian with subtitles, but the
story is so gripping you don't even notice.
Comment left by Aleeyne on 11th June, 2011 at 11:51
I will definitely go to see this movie after reading your review.