Wednesday, 25 April 2018

Review: Loveless - A grim masterpiece by a fascinating director

In Loveless, director Andrey Zvyaginstev's follow up to Golden Globe winning Leviathan, Zhenya and Boris are going through a vicious divorce marked by resentment and hatred. Already embarking on new lives, each with a new partner, they are impatient to start again at the detriment of the welfare of  their 12-year-old son Alyosha. Until, after witnessing one of their fights, Alyosha disappears.
Shot in Moscow, with international support after the Russian government disapproved of Zvyagintsev's 2014 film Leviathan, Loveless doubles up quite admirably as a both social commentary modern life in Putin's Russia as well as an engrossing family drama.
Painting modern Russia in a somewhat bleak form with the cinematography, score and indeed performances encapsulating the grim, harsh reality of the situation enfolding before the audiences eyes. As tough a watch as this feature can be (Singin in the Rain it is not!) it is ultimately compelling viewing with Zvyaginstev creating a modern masterpiece from such sombre raw materials.
Whereas, modern day Russia is not depicted as anything overly joyous it's the human nature critique that is at the forefront of this compelling film as it shows us that not only can tragedy bring humans together but invariably tear them apart.
Winner of the Jury Prize at Cannes 2017 and nominated for Best Foreign Film at this years Academy Awards Loveless is a film that will undoubtedly require patience at times such are the cold hearted themes running throughout but it's haunting intensity and multi layered elements insure that this film is one that will cling to it's audience long after the end credits roll.

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