Tag Archives: Russia & Soviet Union

No Place in Space

On Cultural Gutter, we’re taking a trip to the future to discover that there’s No Place in Space as we explore the Soviet science fiction film To the Stars By Hard Ways. The movie begins with a group of cosmonauts on a routine mission. They happen across a derelict spaceship filled with what appear to be a group of genetically

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Legend of Suram Fortress

Based on a retelling by author Daniel Chonkadze of a Georgian folktale, the simple plot at the core of the movie is about Georgia in a tumultuous time, caught in the middle of a war between Muslims and Christians. Although its borders are largely secure thanks to a network of fortresses, one of these strongholds is a weak link owing to the fact that no matter what manner of architectural and engineering know-how is applied to it, the walls inevitably crumble after a short while.

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Mad Science and Martian Maidens

Aleksey Nikolayevich Tolstoy was Russia’s less internationally known Tolstoy. While the one was writing thousand-page tomes about sad people losing things (pretty sure that’s the plot of most Leo Tolstoy books) that would be forced upon generation after generation, the other Tolstoy was writing slick science fiction adventures like Aelita (1923, adapted into a movie a year later), Engineer Garin

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Viy

Based on a story by Ukrainian-born writer Nikolai Gogol, Viy is the story of good-for-nothing layabout Khoma (Leonid Kuravlyov), a scholar from the local monastery who with his two friends is on his way home for a break from the rigors of not really applying himself to his studies. To be fair to Khoma, he seems no worse than the rest of the students, who follow their release from seminary school with goose-theft, drunken carousing, and occasional grab-ass.

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Apocalypse Code

Studies of Russian cinema tend to be studies of Soviet cinema — classics from the glory days (such as they were) of the communist powerhouse. Russia has moved on, though, both cinematically and culturally (though Vladimir Putin would love if that wan’t the case), and modern Russian cinema is a very different beast than the cinema from which it has

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Wolfhound

Anyone who is familiar with the tropes of the sword and sorcery genre will be on firm ground, but the fact that Wolfhound lacks originality doesn’t mean it lacks for entertainment value.

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