Letter Never Sent (Neotpravlennoye pismo) (1959)
Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.
Critic Reviews for Letter Never Sent (Neotpravlennoye pismo)
Classic socialist realism film that is enhanced by erotic melodramatics and powerful stylish nature images.
Elaborate, gliding tracking shots provide a sense of mastery over nature that the characters can't achieve
elevates the familiar into something both emotionally engaging and existentially disarming
Cinematic virtuoso Mikhail Kalatozov's slightly deranged great-great-uncle to everything from The Blair Witch Project to Rescue Dawn gets a no-frills but flawless high-definition release from the Criterion Collection.
Audience Reviews for Letter Never Sent (Neotpravlennoye pismo)
While a very sobbering film and one that really packs quite a lot of melodrama into it's short running time, Letter Never Sent is a very artistic work with a few things going for it. The cinematography is amazing and really captures nature in both a very serene and dangerous way through long shots and tracking shots of the vast landscape the explorers are within. The POV changes constantly in the film altering between scenic long shots to the varying characters point of views both in their normal interactions as well as being carried or finally succumbing to exhaustion. It really does add a very unique and personal perspective to the filming and the viewpoint of the person watching. It is tributed to explorers everywhere and the Soviet Union in which the characters say numerous times that they are conducting the geological search for the betterment of the movement. Taken as a tale of survival though, which it ends up truly being, the film is wonderfully done and very artistically captured.
The acting is overblown, but with occasional flashes of brilliance. The plot for the first 2/3 is week and disconnected, but becomes tragically deep and moving. This was without a doubt a tough film to make, and the film construction is stunning. Not a great movie, but one well worth seeing.
Stark, raw and a little artsy. Fantastic performances all-around.
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