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Leviathan

(Leviafan)
Russia 2014. Dir: Andrey Zvyagintsev. 140 min. DCP

“A stone-cold masterpiece ... It is as an essential — and restorative — a piece of cinema as one could ever hope to see.”
CATHERINE SHOARD, THE GUARDIAN

A political masterwork of staggering scale and consequence, Zvyagintsev’s epic, ambitious, Oscar-nominated fourth feature is a stunner! Nikolay (Aleksei Serebryakov) lives with his second wife (Elena Lyadova, also of Elena) and teenage son in the remote, isolated Kola Peninsula in Arctic Russia. Their modest villa was built by Nikolay’s ancestors on a site now coveted by the local mayor, who wants to expropriate the land for personal use. When Nikolay lawyers up and takes legal action, the unmerciful power of the state and church bare down on him. Betrayal and tragedy ensue — and gallons of vodka are consumed — before the film’s devastating, inevitable conclusion. Zvyagintsev draws on lofty philosophical sources — The Book of Job, Thomas Hobbes — to elevate this scathing indictment of official corruption to near mythical heights. Russia’s Ministry of Culture, which backed 35% of the production, disavowed the film during its storied, critical ascent. Winner of Best Screenplay at Cannes.


COARSE LANGUAGE; VIOLENCE; NUDITY; SEXUALLY SUGGESTIVE SCENE
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REVIEWS

"One of the outstanding films of 2014, Leviathan lives up to its title: it's a behemoth of intelligent contemporary cinema."

Film Comment | full review