Silent Souls (2011)
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Critic Reviews for Silent Souls
Full of striking visual images and fragmentary half-truths - a dour meditation on love and death that arrests and alienates in equal measure.
The performances are pitch perfect. The culture is fascinating. See it. See it. See it.
Aleksei Fedorchenko's crisp, beautiful film ponders the oddness and necessity of the folk rites in which we all seek solace.
Fedorchenko may not exactly be on oath with all of these Meryan traditions of his, but they create an utterly distinctive world, and the close harmony provided by a choir in one scene really is arresting.
The wheels within wheels of sly tale-spinning turn quietly, turn deep.
Audience Reviews for Silent Souls
In "Silent Souls," Aist(Igor Sergeev) is the son of a famous poet. Having failed to write anything of his own, Aist works in a paper factory. While making time with a female security guard, he is called to the office of Miron(Yuriy Tsurilo), his boss. It's not about that, however. See, Miron's younger wife Tanya(Yuliya Aug) has just died and he needs help in attending to the appropriate funeral rites. Since this might take a few days, Aist, takes along the birds, buntings, that he just bought. "Silent Souls" is a rather beguiling movie. If it is oddly so, it is perhaps the way an outsider, or the viewer, sees the customs shown which are fading away in this modern world.(The scene in the box store exemplifies this clash of worlds.) In any case, the narration is definitely necessary, as else we might come to a thoroughly different conclusion as to what is really happening.(Like for instance, that Miron murdered the unhappy Tanya which I am not entirely ruling out.) We see all of this mostly over the characters' shoulders which does make it kind of hard to focus on them at times while the movie's deliberate pace does wonders in establishing a keen sense of loneliness. Even with the funereal mood, I am wondering how seriously to take the movie at times, considering the awful poetry, not as bad as Vogon poetry, mind you, but still bad, which is pretty ridiculous.
'Silent Souls'. Long, patient takes, meticulous direction, stunning imagery, and a strange old tale of holding onto the past.
Haunting Russian drama about 2 men bound by the same woman, on a journey to give her a proper burial. Nods to Tarkovsky, lost hopes, and faded dreams converge in this eerily effective study on grief. Weak ending aside, it feels remarkably lived in - a melancholy testament to humanity's quest for immortality.
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