dir: Andrei Konchalovsky
If you ever wanted to watch a movie about a strike at a factory in Novocherkassk in 1962 that resulted in Soviet authorities killing a bunch of innocent people who had the temerity to protest falling wages, rising prices and unavailability of basic food in what they were told was a communist paradise, then this is the film you’ve been waiting for all your life.
Saying that the Soviet years were already renowned for the sheer, spiteful waste of millions of lives and the cruelty of such a brutal, totalitarian system downplays the fact that people forget, all the time, and it’s stuff none of us should be forgetting, ever. But it also ignores the fact that Russian life has always been brutal, and that, just to massively over-generalise, they are a fatalistic people who always expect the worst and are rarely disappointed.
I’ll give you two basic idiomatic examples: in English there’s the phrase “hope springs eternal”.
In Russian the phrase is “hope dies last”.
In English, we say “love is blind”.
In Russian? “Love is evil”. Literally. Lyubov zla means “love is evil”. The full phrase is “love is evil and will even make you fall in love with a goat”.
I mean, how the fuck do you deal with such an entrenched cultural mentality?