Krug Vtoroy (The Second Circle) (1990)





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Movie Info

The director of this film, Alexander Sokurov, is famous for his complete disregard for commercial success and his determination to make films the way he wants them made. The narrative structure of his films is usually very loose. For some fans, (but by no means all) he is considered to be an heir to the great Andrei Tarkovsky. He's one of the most highly regarded contemporary Russian filmmakers. This film opens Sokurov's trilogy that includes Krug Vtoroy (The Second Circle), Kamen (The Stone) and Tikhiye Stranitsy (Whispering Pages). Krug Vtoroy is about the absence of connections between people and the mechanical insertion of once-important rituals into their lives. In the story, a young man (Petr Alexandrov) shares a dingy apartment with his father, who has had the poor judgement to die on a weekend. Because of this, the son has to keep his father's body in the house, since undertakers don't work on weekends. This gives him an opportunity to consider his father's death and the human situation at close hand. In this film, the corpse gets to consider the son, as well. The young man has difficulty raising the tiny amount he needs to give to the undertaker to get him to take his father's body away for burial, but finally succeeds in this. ~ Clarke Fountain, Rovi
Art House & International , Drama
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Critic Reviews for Krug Vtoroy (The Second Circle)

All Critics (3)

The brownish, monochrome color scheme lacks the transcendent beauty of Sokurov's later films, and it can be tough going, but it also has the mark of a master.

Full Review… | June 9, 2006
Combustible Celluloid

The Second Circle is awash in the pain of loss, yet how often grim comedy breaks through the austere surface.

Full Review… | April 3, 2006
Slant Magazine

This relentless meditation on the death of one's father also serves as a metaphor for the spiritual debasement of modern Russia.

Full Review… | October 25, 2005
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Audience Reviews for Krug Vtoroy (The Second Circle)

I applaud Sokurov for presenting a film with such a clear vision. In terms of mood, sound design, visuals and content, he makes no apparent compromise. This is exactly the sort of Russian film that keeps many people from enjoying Russian films, but there's a touch of absurdist comedy lurking beneath its frigid surface. It's all very dead pan, but how else can you handle bureaucrats asking for money as a man's father waits to be moved into a coffin or when the poor guy has to "loan" his father his only pair of socks so that he can be legally buried? The visuals and claustrophobic and intentionally grainy, but when a movie is named after a circle of Dante's hell, you shouldn't expect post-production polish. Some viewers may be turned off by the near lack of music, dialogue or any sound whatsoever, but it fits the film.

Richard Stracke
Richard Stracke

[center][font=Times New Roman][size=4][color=black][img][/img][/color][/size][/font][/center] [font=Times New Roman][size=4][color=black][/color][/size][/font] [font=Times New Roman][size=4][color=white]Summary (from IMDB): A man tries to come to terms with his father's death and to deal with the mundane details of his burial in a society cut off from spirituality.[/color][/size][/font] [font=Times New Roman][size=4][color=#000000][/color][/size][/font] [center][img][/img][/center] [font=Times New Roman][size=4][color=black][/color][/size][/font] [font=Times New Roman][size=4][color=white]By far the most disappointing Sokurov I've seen yet. All of his films are slow paced, but are still able to move. This just sat still. Additionally, the cinematography was even bland (by Sokurov's standards). There were a few scenes that were shot absolutely wonderfully, but about 60+ minutes of the 85 minute runtime was bland visually. Emotionally, this movie offered very little. There is a poetic scene where the main character is walking to see a doctor and a scene where he converses with an undertaker that are great, but those moments were rarities. Most of the movie was stale.[/color][/size][/font]

Chris Weseloh
Chris Weseloh

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