As 2016 was announced the Year of the Russian Cinema, the 38th MIFF features Russian and Soviet films that have become international icons. This program includes perhaps rather unexpected for the present Russian society yet undoubtedly remarkable movies. It will be possible have a discussion with the program’s guests about why these films have provoked such a strong public response. The importance of such a cycle in the times of the present international confrontation can hardly be underestimated.
The cycle includes nine screenings (feature or short film programs). One of them is Abram Room’s famous “Bed and Sofa”, which to this day inspires feminist activists all over the world. Dziga Vertov’s popularity in the West is no secret, and Jean-Luc Godard and Jean-Pierre Gorin, who created the Dziga Vertov Group, were inspired by Vertov’s “Kino-pravda” which features in our program. The legends about Aleksandr Medvedkin’s “cinetrain” to this day encourages young filmmakers from all over the world to take their first steps to create and interact with the viewers. The audience will be presented the new, Hollywood-reedited version of Oscar-winning “Moscow Strikes Back”. Pavel Klushantsev’s “Planet of the Storms” was re-edited by Roger Corman’s studio into two American remixes and inspired Stanley Kubrick for his masterpiece “2001: A Space Odyssey”. There is also Sergey Urusevsky’s “I Am Cuba”, which was bought and presented in the USA by Francis Ford Coppola, and which, just like Mikhail Kalatozov’s “The Cranes Are Flying”, became an international sensation of its time. There is also Mark Donskoy’s “Foma Gordeev”, which turned iconic together with his other picture “Rainbow” thanks to the French critics who believed Donskoy to be one of the greatest Soviet directors. The cycle includes Yury Norstein’s animated films, and we hope he will be able to talk in person about his communication with Hayao Miyadzaki, who, as is well-known, has a very high opinion of the creator of “Hedgehog in the Fog” and unfinished “The Overcoat”. “Love and Lies” represents Ilya Frez, who was once dedicated a rave article in the cult American magazine “Film Comment”. The exceptional soundtrack by Aleksey Rybnikov nearly got nominated for Oscar.