9th Company (9 Rota) (2005) (Russia)

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9th Company (9 Rota) (2005) (Russia)

Postby hengcs » Fri Jul 27, 2007 6:19 am

Director: Fyodor Bondarchuk
Cast: Fyodor Bondarchuk, Aleksei Chadov, Mikhail Yevlanov, Artyom Mikhalkov, Konstantin Kryukov

This film was submitted by Russia for Oscar 2007.

The other two "selling points" were ...
-- the director is the son of Sergei Bondarchuk (director, War and Peace)
-- the budget of the film is about $9 mil

The official website

Set in 1988, it is about Soviet's war at Afghanistan. The first half of the film concentrates on the military training while the second half concentrates on the defence of Height 3234. The story begins from Day 1 ...

My Thoughts

-- Because the first half of the film focuses on the training prior to deployment at Afghanistan, it feels a bit like many other films in this "genre" ... you are likely to find scenes/styles of familiarity, reminding you of some Hollywood films ... for example, there is bound to be a seemingly "tough/cruel" sergeant who tries to prepare his recruits for the horrid of war ... for example, recruits initially are always full of themselves ... etc ... the second half of the film, I thought, is better, as they are being deployed in Afghanistan, to defend and gain heights for the transport column ...

-- Although the film features a very good ensemble of young cast (all pretty well known in Russia), their characters are not sufficiently developed because there are simply too many of them ... and unlike some Hollywood films which centre around 1 or 2 main protagonists, this film tries to be "fair" by spreading its foci a bit ... as a result, it may be difficult for the audience to be entirely emotionally attached to 1 or 2 of them; instead, the audience has to feel for all of them as a whole ... not to worry, by virtue of the story and its theme, one would still be touched ...

-- The ending scenes/lines are rather touching ...

-- I thought the soundtrack is interesting ... Visually, it is also nice to look at ...

Give it a chance ... it does have some semblance to Hollywood films ...

PS: I particularly like the song that was played in the EXTRA "20 years later" (a documentary/interview) ... hmmm, maybe they should have included that song at the end of the film ... a very meaningful and moving song ...

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