The Belovs

The Belovs

Director(s): Victor Kossakovsky

Fest Year: 2012

Series:

Runtime: 1:00

In Person: director Victor Kossakovsky

“You shouldn’t film us. We’re just common people.” Thus begins Victor Kossakovsky’s mesmerizing, tragic, and raucous portrait of a Russian farm family. Beautifully shot in vintage black and white, The Belovs tells the story of twice-widowed Anna Belova, who lives with her brother Mikhail. Sometimes two other brothers, Vasily and Sergei Feodorovich, come to visit them. Their quarrels, tears, and joys all play out in front of Kossakovsky’s patient, intuitive camera, which is as likely to focus on a stray hedgehog in the road as it is on Anna’s weathered face. Tea and vodka are consumed, potatoes dug up, steam baths taken. They debate whether misery can be measured and stoically accept their tough but straightforward lives. But to view their desperation as tragic is to turn a blind eye to the flashes of tenderness and humor that abound in this film. (DW)

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