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Film digest: movies about the war, gays in the USSR and the Middle Ages


Alexei Batalov and Tatyana Samoilova in the film "The Cranes Are Flying"

War films for Victory Day, a new project by Alexander Rodnyansky, a series based on the legends of King Arthur – we talk about the main news in the world of cinema.

1 Program for Victory Day

Even though the coronavirus has canceled large-scale celebrations of the 75th anniversary of the Great Victory on the streets of cities, all planned events will take place on the Internet: hundreds of actions dedicated to the May 9 holiday will be held on a variety of platforms.

So, VKontakte will launch a 14-hour marathon of Soviet cinema about the war. The program includes "The Fate of a Man", "Ascent", "The Cranes Are Flying", "White Tiger", "Belorussky Station", "Ivan’s Childhood" and "They Fought for the Motherland".

The broadcast will begin on May 9 at 9:00 Moscow time in the Official Pages community. Of course, you can watch these pictures on other resources at any time, but this marathon is a great opportunity to revisit the classics or fill in the gaps: everything is already collected in one place.

Film digest: movies about the war, gays in the USSR and the Middle Ages

"Go and see"

The network of cinemas "Karo" has also prepared its own film program, which operates online during the closing of cinemas: a series of war films that, according to the curators, have become iconic. Each show is preceded by an address by the curator of the program, Maxim Gorbov, in which he talks in detail about the film.

On May 9, the Cuckoo by Alexander Rogozhkin will be shown, on May 10 – The Reader by Stephen Daldry, and on May 11 – the cult film Come and See by Elem Klimov.

The screenings will be held on the KAROArt.LIVE platform, the schedule can be viewed here.

Film digest: movies about the war, gays in the USSR and the Middle Ages


Many online cinemas have also prepared a special program for Victory Day – look for details on the websites of your favorite video services. Most will also broadcast the Immortal Regiment online action: since the procession could not take place in the traditional format this year for obvious reasons, it was replaced with a virtual one.

To take part in the campaign, you need to fill out a form with information and add a photo of a veteran relative and your own on the Immortal Regiment website or social networks. The online procession will be broadcast on media screens across the country, in the subway, in online cinemas and on social networks.

All details are here.

2 Nicolas Cage – "Tiger King"

For a week now, the hype around the Netflix serial documentary “Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness" about the confrontation between the owner of a private zoo and an animal rights activist with a dubious past has not subsided – the story itself turned out to be too controversial, and the characters were on purpose you can’t imagine. Hollywood is right there: based on the film, they are already filming a feature series starring Nicolas Cage, who will also become a co-producer of the project.

Film digest: movies about the war, gays in the USSR and the Middle Ages

Nicolas Cage/Joe Exotic

The actor will play Joe Exotic, the former owner of a private zoo with tigers, lions and other exotic animals, who is currently serving a prison sentence for attempted contract killing and animal cruelty. Cage got a colorful character: openly gay, practicing polygamy, country singer, YouTube blogger, former candidate for governor and president of the United States, lover of drugs, weapons and crazy outfits – “a gay redneck with a gun”, as he calls himself.

The script will be based on Texas Montly’s "Joe Exotic: A Dark Journey into the World of a Mad Man", but the series will certainly echo the Netflix project that is literally going crazy in the US.

There will be eight episodes in total, and Dan Lagana (American Vandal) will be the showrunner, with a premiere date yet to be announced. For Nicolas Cage, this is the first television project.

Film digest: movies about the war, gays in the USSR and the Middle Ages

Joe Exotic

3 Trailer for a movie based on the life of Pete Davidson (and no Kate Beckinsale)

The first trailer for The King of Staten Island, based in part on the dramatic biography of 26-year-old comedian Pete Davidson, ex-boyfriend of Ariana Grande, Kate Beckinsale, Margaret Qualley and Kaia Gerber, has been released online. However, the picture will not be dedicated to love affairs, but to a difficult childhood and becoming a creative unit: Davidson’s father was a firefighter and died saving people during the September 11, 2001 attacks, which determined Pete’s fate.

Film digest: movies about the war, gays in the USSR and the Middle Ages

Pete Davidson in King of Staten Island

In the center of the plot is a young and careless Scott, who lives with his mother and hangs out with friends all day long, smoking weed and having fun. He still cannot come to terms with the death of his father and prefers not to think about the future. His mother’s new romance takes him by surprise and makes him rethink his whole life.

The role of Scott was played by Pete Davidson himself, he also co-wrote the script. Also starring in the film are Marisa Tomei, Steve Buscemi, Maud Apatow, Pamela Adlon and others. The director was Judd Apatow, known for the films "The Forty-Year-Old Virgin", "Knocked Up", "The Girl Without Complexes". The film will be released on June 12 on online platforms.

4 Amazing adventures of gays in the USSR – about this new film by Alexander Rodnyansky

President of the Kinotavr festival and producer Alexander Rodnyansky spoke about a new project that his studio is currently working on. The story is amazing for the cinema of the CIS countries, given the laws: a new film called "Red Rainbow" will be dedicated to the adventures of gay foreigners in the USSR. And this picture is based on real events. Here is how Rodnyansky himself describes the plot on Instagram:

Film digest: movies about the war, gays in the USSR and the Middle Ages

Alexander Rodnyansky

The production center acquired the rights to the story from the members of the delegation themselves and the translator who accompanied them, but who these people are is unknown. But it is clear that the film will be full of curious situations, because "it was impossible to allow the high authorities to become aware of Comrade Kapitonov’s unfortunate mistake." But with all this, it is not worth pre-recording the picture in the “comedy of situations”:

– explains Rodnyansky, known as a producer of auteur cinema: it was he who worked with Andrei Zvyagintsev on his famous films "Elena", "Leviathan", "Dislike" and produced the sensational "Dylda" by Kantemir Balagov.

The script of the film will be written by a well-known British author, "involved in the creation of several significant series", whose name Rodnyansky still keeps secret. Other details of the project are still unknown, but the expectation rating is still very high.

5 New shots of the fantasy series "Cursed" based on the legends of King Arthur

The Lady of the Lake, the Maiden of the Lake, the Lady of the Lake, Nimue – as soon as the stories of the Arthurian cycle did not name a woman who played a fateful role in the life of King Arthur. It is believed that she raised Lancelot, killed Merlin, gave Arthur the legendary sword Excalibur and escorted the king on his last journey to the island of Avalon. But, of course, in the legends, the first violin belongs to King Arthur himself and his devoted knights, and not to the women who made history with them. It’s time to rewrite the old fairy tale, which is what they are doing in the Cursed series, new footage of which recently appeared on the network.

Film digest: movies about the war, gays in the USSR and the Middle Ages


The central character this time was the same Lady of the Lake. Based on the graphic novel of the same name by Frank Miller and Tom Wheeler, the series tells the story of the formation of the heroine and shows the events of her youth, unfolding in the notional Middle Ages. Having lost his mother, Nimue meets the young warrior Arthur: he is looking for Merlin to give him an ancient sword. The girl goes in search with him and during this journey shows miracles of courage and ingenuity, and also helps to organize resistance against lawlessness.

Starring 13 Reasons Why star Katherine Langford. The premiere is expected to take place in July.

Film digest: movies about the war, gays in the USSR and the Middle Ages

6 The first trailer of the film "Byokade Leningrad"

The first trailer of the film "Byokade Leningrad" directed by Andrey Zaitsev has been released (it was he who made a touching film about teenage love "14+", which, unfortunately, went almost unnoticed). The film, based on the works of Olga Berggolts and Daniil Granin, as well as on the memoirs of the siege survivors and their diaries, tells about the first winter of the siege – the most difficult.

Leningrad, February 1942. A young woman, Olga, walks across the city to her father. She has just buried her husband and is sure that she herself will soon die of hunger – and wants to see her dad for the last time and say goodbye to him. On the way, she meets many different people and finds herself in difficult situations – this blockade odyssey shows what she experienced during the siege of Leningrad in this terrible winter.

The roles were played by Olga Ozollapinya, Sergey Dreiden, Polina Filonenko, Andrey Shibarshin, Daria Rumyantseva and many others. The film will be released on January 27, 2021.

Film digest: movies about the war, gays in the USSR and the Middle AgesFilm digest: movies about the war, gays in the USSR and the Middle Ages

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