Russophiles Unite! Movie Podcast
My Boyfriend is an Angel (Vera Storozheva; 2011)

My Boyfriend is an Angel (Vera Storozheva; 2011)

February 13, 2020

Ally is joined once again by Carrie to discuss this fantastical rom-com in which Sasha (Anna Starshenbaum), a student, meets Serafim (Artur Smolyaninov), a celestial visitor in Moscow on New Year's Eve.

CONTENT WARNING: As we discuss in this episode, this film contains extreme racial insensitivity and also outright racism.

Expect SPOILERS from about 17 minutes until the end.

My Boyfriend is an Angel also stars Olga Popova, Nikita Efremov, Sergey Puskepalis, Ivan Makarevich, 

The show's intro music is by Sasha Ilyukevich and the Highly Skilled Migrants.

You can find more of their music at:

https://thehighlyskilledmigrants.bandcamp.com/

Or: https://open.spotify.com/artist/1cXWmfhuDWyfKfsYADk96F

If you'd like to get in touch and tell us what you thought of the film and/or the podcast episode, it would be great to hear from you! Here are some ways you can do that:

Twitter: @RussophilesU

Email: russophilesunite@gmail.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/russophilesunite

Instagram: www.instagram.com/russophiles_unite/

Letterboxd: https://letterboxd.com/Ally_

Support the show/fund Ally's caffeine habit at: https://ko-fi.com/russophilesunite

Listen to Ally's other podcast appearances at: https://www.podchaser.com/creators/alistair-pitts-107ZzmUqmI

Office Romance (Eldar Ryazanov; 1977)

Office Romance (Eldar Ryazanov; 1977)

January 9, 2020

Michele Berdy, Moscow Times columnist, translator, and The Word's Worth podcast host, joins Ally to discuss this Brezhnev-era rom-com starring Alisa Freyndlikh and Andrei Myagkov.

Expect SPOILERS from about 42 minutes in until the end.

Office Romance also stars Oleg Basilashvili, Svetlana Nemolyaeva, and Liya Akhedzhakova.

Listen to Michele Berdy's The Word's Worth at: http://wordsworth.themoscowtimes.com/ 

If you'd like to get in touch and tell us what you thought of the film and/or the podcast episode, it would be great to hear from you! Here are some ways you can do that:

Twitter: @RussophilesU

Email: russophilesunite@gmail.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/russophilesunite

Instagram: www.instagram.com/russophiles_unite/

Letterboxd: https://letterboxd.com/Ally_

Support the show/fund Ally's caffeine habit at: https://ko-fi.com/russophilesunite

Listen to Ally's other podcast appearances at: https://www.podchaser.com/creators/alistair-pitts-107ZzmUqmI

Chapayev (Sergey & Georgy Vasilev; 1934)

Chapayev (Sergey & Georgy Vasilev; 1934)

December 5, 2019

Filmmaker and Flixwise: Canada host Martin Kessler returns to discuss this Russian Civil War set proto-action film. It has the dubious distinction of being one of Joseph Stalin's favourite movies, and it stars Boris Babochkin as the eponymous Red Army commander.

CONTENT WARNING:

The film briefly depicts a sexual assault (it is not framed as such, but certainly reads that way to modern audiences). Ally and Martin didn't actually discuss this scene in the episode, however.

Expect SPOILERS from about 39 minutes in until the end.

Hear more of Martin on Flixwise: Canada: http://flixwise.com/category/episodes/flixwise-canada/

If you'd like to get in touch and tell us what you thought of the film and/or the podcast episode, it would be great to hear from you! Here are some ways you can do that:

Twitter: @RussophilesU

Email: russophilesunite@gmail.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/russophilesunite

Instagram: www.instagram.com/russophiles_unite/

Letterboxd: https://letterboxd.com/Ally_

Support the show/fund Ally's caffeine habit at: https://ko-fi.com/russophilesunite

Listen to Ally's other podcast appearances at: https://www.podchaser.com/creators/alistair-pitts-107ZzmUqmI

Anna (Luc Besson; 2019)

Anna (Luc Besson; 2019)

November 7, 2019

This time around we're watching Luc Besson's slightly Cold War-flavoured espionage/action film Anna.

To discuss the film, Ally is once again joined by veteran of the podcast and possible 6th Element, Lyn Seren.

Expect SPOILERS from about 19 minutes in until the end.

CONTENT WARNING: the film includes depictions of an abusive relationship, self-harm, and suicidal behaviour.

Anna stars Sasha Luss, Helen Mirren, Cillian Murphy, Luke Evans,  and Lera Abova.

If you'd like to get in touch and tell us what you thought of the film and/or the podcast episode, it would be great to hear from you! Here are some ways you can do that:

Twitter: @RussophilesU

Email: russophilesunite@gmail.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/russophilesunite

Instagram: www.instagram.com/russophiles_unite/

Letterboxd: https://letterboxd.com/Ally_

Support the show/fund Ally's caffeine habit at: https://ko-fi.com/russophilesunite

Sunflower (Vittorio De Sica; 1970)

Sunflower (Vittorio De Sica; 1970)

October 3, 2019

World War II casts its long shadow over the podcast once more as we watch Sunflower, directed by Vittorio De Sica.

To discuss the film, Ally is once again joined by Russian language and literature grad, Carrie.

Expect SPOILERS from about 12 minutes in until the end.

Sunflower stars Sophia Loren, Marcello Mastroianni, and Ludmila Savelyeva.

If you'd like to get in touch and tell us what you thought of the film and/or the podcast episode, it would be great to hear from you! Here are some ways you can do that:

Twitter: @RussophilesU

Email: russophilesunite@gmail.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/russophilesunite

Instagram: www.instagram.com/russophiles_unite/

Letterboxd: https://letterboxd.com/Ally_

Support the show/fund Ally's caffeine habit at: https://ko-fi.com/russophilesunite

How I Ended This Summer (Aleksei Popogrebsky; 2010)

How I Ended This Summer (Aleksei Popogrebsky; 2010)

September 5, 2019

Brace yourself for inclement weather, isolation, and factual wang in How I Ended This Summer, directed by Aleksei Popogrebsky.

To discuss the film, Ally is joined once again by occasional watcher of Russian films and all-round splendid fellow, Lyn Seren.

Expect SPOILERS from about 18 minutes in until the end.

CONTENT WARNING: in addition to extremely brief nudity, the film seemed to suggest a possible suicide off-screen, and this is discussed briefly during the episode.

How I Ended this Summer stars Grigory Dobrygin and Sergey Puskepalis.

If you'd like to get in touch and tell us what you thought of the film and/or the podcast episode, it would be great to hear from you! Here are some ways you can do that:

Twitter: @RussophilesU

Email: russophilesunite@gmail.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/russophilesunite

Instagram: www.instagram.com/russophiles_unite/

Letterboxd: https://letterboxd.com/Ally_

Support the show/fund Ally's caffeine habit at: https://ko-fi.com/russophilesunite

Little Vera (Vasily Pichul; 1988)

Little Vera (Vasily Pichul; 1988)

August 1, 2019

Ally is joined by Alissa Timoshkina, chef, KinoVino supper club founder, and author of Salt and Time: Recipes from a Russian Kitchen to discuss this somewhat notorious drama from the late 1980s glastnost period a few years before the Soviet Union collapsed.

Expect SPOILERS from about 55 minutes in until the end.

CONTENT WARNING: During the film it is revealed that one of the characters was from a present day standpoint in some jurisdictions the victim of statutory rape (Soviet law defined the age of consent as when an individual had reached puberty). There is also a fairly explicit sex scene.

Little Vera stars Natalya Negoda, Andrey Sokolov, Yuri Nazarov, Lyudmila Zaytseva, and Alexandra Tabakova.

Check out Alissa's amazing culinary creations at: www.instagram.com/borsch_and_no_tears/

If you'd like to get in touch and tell us what you thought of the film and/or the podcast episode, it would be great to hear from you! Here are some ways you can do that:

Twitter: @RussophilesU

Email: russophilesunite@gmail.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/russophilesunite

Instagram: www.instagram.com/russophiles_unite/

Letterboxd: https://letterboxd.com/Ally_

Support the show/fund Ally's caffeine habit at: https://ko-fi.com/russophilesunite

 

Come and See (Elem Klimov; 1985)

Come and See (Elem Klimov; 1985)

July 4, 2019

Ally is joined by London-based singer-songwriter and poet Sasha Ilyukevich for this harrowing journey into Nazi-occupied Belarus in 1943, which stars Aleksey Kravchenko and Olga Mironova.

CONTENT WARNING: Come and See contains sustained depictions of atrocities, including rape and mass murder. It's a very, very tough watch. SPOILERS from about 49 minutes in until the end.

You can find out more about Sasha and his band The Highly Skilled Migrants here: www.sashailyukevich.com/

If you'd like to get in touch and tell us what you thought of the film and/or the podcast episode, it would be great to hear from you! Here are some ways you can do that:

Twitter: @RussophilesU

Email: russophilesunite@gmail.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/russophilesunite

Instagram: www.instagram.com/russophiles_unite/

Letterboxd: https://letterboxd.com/Ally_

Onegin (Martha Fiennes; 1999)

Onegin (Martha Fiennes; 1999)

June 6, 2019

We're partying like it's 1999, not just because it's a new season of the podcast, but also because our film this time, Onegin, directed by Martha Fiennes, is from that very year.

Joining Ally for the festivities are two returning guests: writer and period drama drama connoisseur Jenny Shelton, and Russian language and literature graduate and maker of a mean breakfast/brunch sangria Carrie Pitts.

SPOILERS from about 28 minutes onwards. 

CONTENT WARNING: the film contains very brief but fairly graphic violence.

Onegin stars Ralph Fiennes, Liv Tyler, Toby Stephens, and Lena Headey.

If you'd like to get in touch and tell us what you thought of the film and/or the podcast episode, here are some ways you can do that:

Twitter: @RussophilesU

Email: russophilesunite@gmail.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/russophilesunite

Instagram: www.instagram.com/russophiles_unite/

Letterboxd: https://letterboxd.com/Ally_

Attraction (Fyodor Bondarchuk; 2017)

Attraction (Fyodor Bondarchuk; 2017)

April 18, 2019

What if aliens visited Earth? And what if they crash-landed in Russia instead of the US for a change? And what if one of them was hunky? All these questions and more are answered in Fyodor Bondarchuk's 2017 film Attraction.

To discuss the film Ally is once again joined by researcher and sci-fi fan Teegan Johnson.

Expect SPOILERS from about 13 minutes in onwards.

CONTENT WARNING: The film depicts gender-based violence and consent issues.

Attraction stars Irina Starshenbaum, Alexander Petrov, Rinal Mukhametov, Evgeny Mikheev and Oleg Menshikov.

If you'd like to get in touch and tell us what you thought of the film and/or the podcast episode, here are some ways you can do that:

Twitter: @RussophilesU

Email: russophilesunite@gmail.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/russophilesunite

Instagram: www.instagram.com/russophiles_unite/

Letterboxd: https://letterboxd.com/Ally_