Keswick Film Club - Alexandra

You are viewing the old version of our website.

Please visit our current website for all the latest information.

Sunday 15th March 5:00 PM


Director: Aleksandr Sokurov Country: Russia/France
Cert: TBC Year: 2007 Length: 95 mins Language: Russian/Chechen

Audience Reaction

Score: 60.94% Attendance: 67



  • More details on this film at the Internet Movie Database


Known mainly in the West for his 96-minute one-take historical tableau Russian Ark (screened by KFC in November 2003) surely one of the oddest art-house hits of all time, Alexander Sokurov is widely viewed as Russia's most important living filmmaker. That fact might not help you much in trying to get a handle on his new Alexandra, a cryptic, prickly tale about an old woman who visits her grandson and his comrades in an isolated war zone, has a series of uncertain encounters and then goes home again.

This movie, so simple on its surface and so hard to figure out, is a pretty tough point of entry to Sokurov's work, though it's not like his other narrative features (The Sun, Father and Son, Mother and Son, Moloch, etc.)are such easy assignments either. The war in question seems to be Russia's campaign against rebels in Chechnya, and in fact Alexandra was shot there, under difficult and dangerous conditions. But everything about Alexandra's journey and the setting is deliberately ambiguous. The war could be almost anywhere, at almost any point in modern history -- or at least any point at which a quasi-imperial army finds itself lodged for years in hostile surroundings, and slipping into depravity and self-doubt.

To any Russian viewer, Sokurov's choice of a leading lady will be fraught with almost electrifying significance. Alexandra is played by 81-year-old Galina Vishnevskaya, probably the greatest operatic soprano in that nation's long musical history and, along with her husband, the cellist and conductor Mstislav Rostropovich, a figure long associated with artistic resistance to the Soviet regime. Although she's used to performing, Vishnevskaya isn't a film actress, and most of the other parts -- her officer grandson, his fellow soldiers, a Chechen woman who befriends Alexandra in the marketplace -- are played by non-professionals.

Find A Film

Search over 1325 films in the Keswick Film Club archive.

Film Festival

Festival Logo

27 Feb - 1 Mar 2020


KFC is friends with Caldbeck Area Film Society and Brampton Film Club and members share benefits across all organisations


Keswick Film Club won the Best New Film Society at the British Federation Of Film Societies awards in 2000.

Since then, the club has won Film Society Of The Year and awards for Best Programme four times and Best Website twice.

We have also received numerous Distinctions and Commendations in categories including marketing, programming and website.

Talking Pictures Talking Pictures The KFC Newsletter
Links Explore the internet with Keswick Film Club
Find Us On Facebook