Saturday, September 26, 2020

1119. Russian Ark

Russian Ark
Directed by Alexander 

So before we begin discussing the movie that I am sure is on everybody's mind, Russian Ark, here's some 1001-related news. According to the Forbidden Planet site, we are due for a new edition of the 1001 movie list on October 4. The cover features Joker (ugh), and the site says the new edition includes Parasite, Little Women, For Sama, and The Lighthouse. Anybody have any guesses about what else will be included, or what might be getting the boot? Personally, I think they will probably add Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, Jojo Rabbit, and Midsommar.

Russian Ark fans, I thank you for your patience. An unnamed narrator wanders through the Winter Palace in Saint Petersburg, and encounters various characters in Russian history do things like look for the bathroom. The highlight of the film is definitely the ballroom sequence. The dance is modeled after the final ball held in Tsarist Russian in 1913 and the visuals are stunning. 

Much like the previous 1001 movie I watched on the List, The Adventures of Prince Achmed, this is more of an astounding technical achievement than a compelling piece of escapism. The entire film was shot in one take, and they apparently failed three times before getting it right. 

So that aspect was interesting, and it was fun recognizing historical characters. But the novelty of the concept didn't keep me enthralled for the entire runtime.

RATING: ***--

Interesting Facts:

The production only had one day to shoot the entire film.

Shot at the Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg. 


  1. Ah, interesting (new edition of the book)... I had wondered that there might not be one this year.. And, if your sources are accurate.. I might just have an easy transition from my current 100% scare ..and maintain it, if those listed are in fact the ones.. Even your three suggestions I've seen. A biggie, I've not seen, that I thought might be on ... 'The Irishman'... partly because it's on Netflix, and partly because it's so long...
    As to what will go... ah, that's so up in the air, and somewhat arbitrary..

    Anyway.. we are supposed to be here for 'Russian Ark'.

    At least I remembered that's why were are here.. I've had a couple of times I've ended up not even mentioning the film..

    A rather uninteresting 'I agree with Amanda'. As chance would have it after Prince Achmed.. superb and admirable concept.. but not one to seriously grab you,and not one to watch again.. And that this is a genuine 'one shot' film (ha, take that 'Rope' and '1917'

  2. I'm hoping The Irishman doesn't make it. What a too-long film!

  3. Have you actually dragged through it Diana? I've not, but feel I should, but not really wanting to!