Petya – “Zigzag of luck”
The role that Burkov has made a happy ticket to the big cinema is undoubtedly the work in the comedy Zigzag of Fortune by Eldar Ryazanov. Ryazanov, who saw only a beginner, unknown to anyone, Burkov, summed up: “he has an ideal face for the role of a drunken Russian intellectual.”
With this maxim, the great director not only unconditionally approved Burkov for the role of the drinking retoucher Petya, but also predetermined the role of the young artist for many years.
Guboshlep – “Red Kalina”
Self-taught actor Georgy Burkov was a close friend of Vasily Shukshin, the same nugget, only from the remote Siberian outback. It was in the famous painting by Shukshin “Kalina Krasnaya” that Burkov played the main villain of his career.
Guboshlep is a repeat thief, an unpleasant person in every way. And at the same time, he is in sharp contrast to the image of a criminal tycoon: a new suit, artistic criminal manners. In a word, Burkov managed to create a vivid and ambiguous image of the bandit Guboshlep, who is trying with all his might to lure the hero Shukshin back into the world of “raspberries” and easy money.
There is a legend that after the release of “Kalina Krasnaya” Burkov was not allowed to pass for real robbers, mistaking him for his own.
Private Alexander Kopytovsky – “They Fought for the Motherland”
Sergei Bondarchuk’s film “They Fought for the Motherland”, based on the novel of the same name by Nobel laureate Mikhail Sholokhov, was the last on-screen meeting between close friends Burkov and Shukshin, who died during the filming of the film.
The picture tells about the difficult period of the Great Patriotic War: in 1942, the Nazi troops were already driven out of Moscow, but the decisive battles – Stalingrad and Kursk – are still far away. In the center of the plot is the fate of the rifle unit, which, with its last strength, covers the Don crossing, critical for Soviet troops, on the outskirts of Stalingrad.
Burkov was very worried, approaching the role of an armor-piercer, private Alexander Kopytovsky. Before filming, the actor even met Mikhail Sholokhov, with whom Sergei Bondarchuk consulted throughout the film. Sholokhov carefully looked at Burkov’s features and said only: “Sasha … Sasha …”
As it turned out, this lapidary remark meant the consent of the master, and Burkov played, perhaps, the most serious role in his life on the screen.
Misha – “Irony of fate or enjoy your bath!”
Eldar Ryazanov’s textbook comedy “The irony of fate, or enjoy your bath!” about the adventures of the unfortunate Zhenya Lukashin, who, according to tradition, after drinking with friends in a bath, mistakenly flies to the city on the Neva, has become a synonym for New Year in our country.
But no story would have come to light if Misha, Lukashin’s comrade, “never gets drunk,” had not put his friend on a plane to Leningrad. This role did not become for Burkov either a professional challenge or a breakthrough in his career, but thanks to the cult status of the film, the funny reveler Misha with the phrase “Guys, the situation is hopeless … You have to drink for Gaul!” for a long time he was remembered by people even immeasurably far from the cinema.
Robinson – “Cruel Romance”
In 1984, Soviet journalists found a convenient target for hot criticism: the Cruel Romance, a free adaptation of Ostrovsky’s “Dowry” by Eldar Ryazanov, was released on the screens. The film was criticized for everything. The inept game of the actors, the director’s mockery of Russian culture, the misunderstood idea of the great playwright – these are just the main theses of the film critics.
But now, after a while, “Cruel Romance” looks completely different. This is, in fact, an author’s adaptation of Ostrovsky’s play, but that is why it is interesting. And for what the image is difficult to scold, it is because of the acting work. Against the background of the beauties Nikita Mikhalkov and Alisa Freindlikh, Andrey Myagkov and Viktor Proskurin, Georgy Burkov is also not lost.
The role of Robinson – the unsuccessful actor Arkady Schastlivtsev, a jester with Paratov richer – seemed to have been created for Burkov, who constantly plays “drunken intellectuals.” In “The Cruel Romance” the actor demonstrated both invariable skill and the ability to discern new facets of the role that has already become familiar.