A classic of Russian documentary film he also stamps his typical hallmark on his latest film. Long shots fragmented with fade-outs, a sophisticated composition and the effective use of 35 mm black-and-white film. Loznitsa is able to raise seeming banality to the status of an artistic testimony indirectly reminiscent of the classics of Russian cinema. On this occasion, he takes his camera along to record an attempt to catch fish in a frozen lake in the middle of the snowy Russian plains. In this harsh natural environment, four young men try to rip from the frozen depths of nature something which will provide them with a livelihood.
This film depicts one day of an operating fabric. It consists of two parts: the first one is called Steel, the second Plaster. This film is about a human being as a part of human world. Metal produced by people enslaves them and reduce their lives to pure reflexes.
Revue is based on archive propaganda newsreels produced in the USSR in the 50's and 60's. The film shows the almost forgotten side of the Soviet times and the way of thinking at that period. It explores the life of people all across the vast expanse of the Soviet Motherland, full of hardship, deprivation and absurd rituals, and at the same time illuminated by the glorious shining of the communist illusion.
The siege of Leningrad has become one of the legends of the 2nd World War. It lasted for 900 days, and it was not until the 1st of March 1944 that the enemy stranglehold on the city with its several million inhabitants relaxed. The city was constantly bombarded, faced hunger and freezing temperatures, but its people kept on working and adjusted their lives to the situation. The film is compiled from authentic news footage. Individual shots have been grouped in thematic passages about various different aspects of the reality of the siege. The director has added no commentary, and his reanimation of the past is based only on the image and evocation through sound. The film thus gets behind the legend to the real life of people in inhuman conditions, which made everyday existence a struggle for survival in the face of the constant presence of death. The sense that the audience has of living through the events derives from both the immediacy of the images and the rhythmic arrangement of the material, which includes hitherto unused footage of the blockade.
Winter. Bus stop in a small village. People are waiting for a bus. They talk. Listening to their conversations the viewer can imagine the world they live in. United by the movement of the camera, the whole place and the people blend together.
It was filmed in rural Russia, near the city of Smolensk. It shows a small village, where all young people are gone and only older people are left. There is shortage of basic material necessities, but at the same time they are in possession of the simple, but most important core values and elements of life: their Village, Time, Friends and Family, Children, Wedding, Thunderstorm, Morning, Conversation, Happiness, Death, Sun, Winter, and Love.
The Train Stop
Speeding trains slice through the silence of the small train stop. The whistle on the locomotive and the thunder of the wheels disappear into the night, but fail to wake up people at the station. People just continue to sleep. What do they wait for? What will wake them up?
Just before winter cloaks everything in the Arctic night, a few hours of daylight linger in late autumn in the village of Sumskoy Posad, one thousand kilometres north of Saint Petersburg, in Karelia, on the shores of the White Sea. Linked to the rest of the country by a vague muddy track and a stretch of railway line, the village lives in a suspended and mysterious dimension. This is the Russia of endless forests and potato fields. A few robust and uncompromising characters work calmly there, driven by no vital needs. Two small girls have just been adopted by a family. The woman is sweet and soft-spoken, whereas the man is hot-tempered. It is Chekov’s Russia: still happy, yet torn apart, and cold.
This movie is a collection of still pictures of residents of Russian countryside. Not a single word. Only long look into the camera. Landscape. Flow of time.
Today We Are Going to Build a House
This movie is about one day on the construction site. To the casual observer it looks like not much is happening at the site, but in reality a very efficient process takes place below the surface. And by the end of the day the house is ready. This film is about the power of group of trained professionals, united by a common goal.
This movie is about a day in life of the settlement for people with mental problems. Located in a peaceful countryside, it conveys an image of a pure, happy place, where people live and work together, in complete harmony. But there is a growing unexplainable feeling of anxiety and hopelessness.