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View All The Island (Ostrov) News
All Critics (19)
| Top Critics (6)
| Fresh (12)
| Rotten (7)
| DVD (1)
A contemplative fable, not without its wry wit, which effectively ponders the workings of faith, specifically the connection between gnawing guilt and a desire to do good.
The Island is visually stunning in its bleak, blue-hued austerity, but its storytelling is simplistic.
Screenplay by young Dmitry Sobolev, a student at Moscow's VGIK film school, has a familiar, almost folksy structure, making for satisfying storytelling but leaving viewers with less to ponder after the story's final, largely foreseeable twist.
An aggravating combination of piousness, arty self-pity, and knowing silliness meant to speak to higher spiritual truths.
Both heartfelt and ultimately optimistic.
Almost a sinful pleasure is Andrey Zhegalov's striking widescreen cinematography.
Stunning to look at and ambitious in its symbolic rendering of the subject.
An unsentimental journey of guilt, atonement and redemption, with moments of comic bleakness. Your eyes will be smarting.
The folksy structure both lulls and frustrates, and there's something dirgeish about the endless scenes of soul-wracking and tea-brewing. The cinematography's almost inappropriately pretty, though.
A slow and sometimes testing parable of sin, faith and redemption, Pavel Lungin's film escapes impenetrable tedium thanks mainly to a captivating central performance.
It's very easy to become weary with the ever-remorseful Anatoly, despite his mischievous sense of humour, and you find yourself yearning to cuff him about the ear and telling him to get over it.
Overall, the story's just a bit too neat to carry the portentous weight that the film-maker seems to be willing into the material.
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