THE FILMS OF ALEXANDR ROGOZHKIN
Cinema Parallel is proud to distribute THE CHEKIST (1992) and LIVING WITH AN IDIOT(1993) by the St Petersburg filmmaker Alexandr Rogozhkin. His work is a powerful and unflinching attempt to peer into the soul (or lack there of?) of the Russian people. THE CHEKIST caused a sensation at the Cannes Film Festival when this, one of the most shocking and yet honest films in the history of cinema, was first screened. Rogozhkin is one of the most unique voices in international cinema today.
now on video
In 1917, at the birth of the Russian Revolution, the Bolshevik secret police (C.H.E.K.A.) unleashed a reign of bloody terror to wipe out any opposition to Communism. The CHEKIST is the first Russian feature to reveal the true face of the CHEKA, as this powerful drama follows the daily rituals of a Cheka Officer as he and his men judge and execute their victims...Jews...Christians...workers...intellectuals...aristocrats... all who reject the new Soviet religion.
PIERS HANDLING, Director of the Toronto International Film Festival said in his program notes for the Toronto Festival screenings.
"ROGOZHKIN EVENTUALLY PENETRATES INTO THE PYSCHOTIC MIND OF THE CHEKIST WITH A MOMENT OF SUBLIME INSIGHT, REMINISCENT OF BERTOLUCCI'S EQUALLY DISTURBING PORTRAIT OF THE FACIST KILLER IN "THE CONFORMIST." THE CHEKIST IS AN OVERWHELMING CRY IN THE FACE OF SUCH MADNESS."
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LIVING WITH AN IDIOT (1993)
Is one of the "blackest" comedies ever shot on black and white.
A Russian intellectual convinced that he can become a "better" person if he invites an "idiot" to come and live with him (and his Proust-reading wife)...reaps the consequences of his idealism. Based on a story by Victor Yerofyer. Screened at the Toronto, Rotterdam, Dublin, (The first complete retrospective of his work), Sidney, and West Virginia Film Festivals. The New York premiere was in 1997 at Anthology Film.
Also selected Screened at the Hong Kong, San Francisco, Vancouver, and Sidney International Festivals.
Born in 1949, studied at the University of Leningrad, worked as a production designer at Lenfilm Studios from 1977-81 studied directing at VGIK in Sergei Gerassimov's master class. FILMS: Ryzaja, Ryzaja (81) Miss Millionaire(87) The Guard(89) The Third Planet(91) Checkist(92) Living With An Idiot(93) Nude(94)The Peculiarities of the National Hunt(1995)
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