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HomeLatest NewsThe Russian "Schindler's List" with Yatsenko vs. "Cheburashka" with Garmash

The Russian “Schindler’s List” with Yatsenko vs. “Cheburashka” with Garmash

Date: May 22, 2024 Time: 17:39:07

Film frame. Provided by “Central Association”

For the second week in a row, the film “Righteous” by Sergei Ursulyak maintains the lead at the box office, ahead of “Cheburashka”.

And, unlike “Cheburashka”, “Fair” – deserves its success. Full rooms in theaters, laughter between tears, tears between laughter and invariable applause at the end.

Hand on heart, the description did not inspire confidence. Someone even decided that this was just another movie about how well-groomed Jews won the whole war. After the press show, the VIPs wrote some kind of pretentious nonsense in the style of “he who doesn’t like him has no heart.” Add to all the presence of Chulpan Khamatova, who went to the Baltic, in a cloth wig, and the image has developed. Are we really going to get the gift of another alternate version of history with a mix of anti-Soviet zuleikh?

Thank God No. Yes, and Chulpan Khamatova, fortunately, plays a small episodic role.

Poster of the movie “The Righteous” directed by Sergei Ursulyak.


The film is based on a real, but almost unknown feat of the Russian political officer Nikolai Kiselev. In 1942, Kiselyov removed 218 Jews from the occupation zone. For more than two months, people walked through forests and swamps, eating berries and roots, breaking through the German ambush several times. For his feat in the early 2000s, Kiselev was posthumously awarded the title of Righteous Among the Nations.

We first learned about this story about ten years ago from the book by Inna Gerasimova “March of Life. How the Dolginov Jews were saved.” It was Gerasimova, the founder of the Museum of Belarusian Jews in Minsk, who was looking for materials on the feat of Nikolai Kiselev, and even the documentary film “Kiselev’s List”, called by analogy with “Schindler’s List”, was filmed. in her. suggestion. The film was based on seven surviving eyewitness stories. The film was not well known, but the classic Tatyana Lioznova, still alive at the time, admitted that after watching The List, she cried for the first time in a long time.

Attempts were also made to make a feature film; Sergei Bezrukov was even considered for the role of officer Kiselev. But all something did not grow together. Either there was no suitable script, or the directors gave in to a difficult task.

But Sergei Ursulyak was not afraid, apparently arguing like his hero Nikolai Kiselev: “There is no choice, but there is a chance.” The basis of his two-hour and forty-minute film novel was the script of the wonderful author Gennady Ostrovsky, and the main role in the film was played not by Bezrukov, but by Alexander Yatsenko.

The choice of actor largely predicted success. Outwardly, Yatsenko is not at all like the prototype of him. However, he has one main superpower that ties him to Kiselev. The viewer believes in Yatsenko and follows him to any wild and notorious game; practically, like the Jews behind Nikolai Kiselev.

By the logic of the film, the trip was not made out of mutual love. The attitude towards the Soviet partisans among the Jews was not much better than towards the Germans. The Soviet government took that, another, third from them. Accumulated mutual complaints abound, as well as reasons not to follow the guide.

Film frame. Provided by “Central Association”

The partisan detachment also has no special love for the Jews. “I’m fine with the Jews, I just don’t like them,” says one of the partisans. The future fair Kiselev also does not seek to save anyone. He just so happened to be extreme. It was behind him, in the partisan desert, that the inhabitants of the next ghetto destroyed by the partisans approached. And no matter how much Kiselev curses, no matter how angry he waves rags, he could not drive away this boring camp.

– Where else can we go? – Reasonably asks the one-legged Rabbi Yankel (Sergey Makovetsky).


In the film, the situation is shown even comically. A mass of strange people, like ducklings after ducks, follow Kiselyov. They interfere in every possible way with the partisans, organize a Jewish hostel in the forest; they blow religious flutes, spitting for their enemies to hear; they throw claims about the pork stew and scandalize in every possible way for whatever reason. Also, the citizens are cowards, shooting enemies is not their forte at all. Therefore, the irritation of the detachment commanders becomes understandable – such a load must be urgently removed.

Film frame. Provided by “Central Association”

Whoever brought it, untangle it.

Somewhere in the forests and swamps there is an unoccupied forty-kilometer-wide passage … there, behind the front line, they offer to lead a group of people to the political instructor Kiselev, promising a generous reward.

“I don’t need posthumous awards,” he refuses, having calculated the possibilities. But no one asks. That’s an order.

So Nikolai Kiselev becomes a mother of Jews, a nanny, a military instructor and, practically, Moses. But first, she needs to convince people to follow her. And this mission is one of the most difficult.

The blueberries in the film are decent, and it is impossible to perceive them as a documentary story.

As critics have already pointed out, the laid-back Jews appear to be doing themselves a favor by allowing partisans to bail them out.

But, the further you go into the forest, the more you believe in everything.

Film frame. Provided by “Central Association”


And about the situation of mutual distrust in Gerasimova’s book, it was said more terrible and clearly. In fact, no one was going to save anyone. They wanted to get rid of the natives of the ghetto who had joined the partisans in a cultural way, until they caught the attention of the Germans and killed the entire detachment.

Surprisingly, the movie is not shot in shades of gray. A scattering of short, brilliant roles evokes a wide variety of emotions.

Film frame. Provided by “Central Association”

– Can you shoot? – the partisans ask the Jew Yankel (Makovetsky), who volunteered.

– Of course, everything! Just show me how,” she answers easily.

There are notable episodes with a Tagil urka, who decided to become a Jew in order to marry a Jewish girl (the role of Maria Zolotukhina).

The scene with the Jewish mother Nechama (Natalya Savchenko) and her two children, whom she sacrifices to stop the German persecution, breaks down in tears:

– It will shoot very far. For my father, and for my sisters, and for our entire family.

Upon hearing the news of her son’s death, Nekhama asks Kiselev how far he threw the grenades.

– The farthest of all, – answers the political instructor, hiding that he did not shoot, but being wounded, a grenade exploded in his hands, waiting for the Nazis.


The film takes place in various time spaces. In 2005, it is being decided whether Nikolai will be called a righteous man. The outcome depends on the sole survivor of the campaign. However, for some reason, Moshe Tal is in no hurry to say a word for the Russian savior.

The controversial ending caused controversy among critics.

Someone saw in what is happening banal greed. Such until death cannot forgive Kiselev’s astrolabe, which he borrowed and did not return.

However, if you think about it, it turns out that this ambiguous situation was a way of showing something different. For example, not so much the notorious greed as the difference in mentalities.

And with this close-up, Kiselev’s feat will become more apparent. Eighty years ago, a simple Russian managed to practically negotiate with aliens. What’s stopping us now?

* This website provides news content gathered from various internet sources. It is crucial to understand that we are not responsible for the accuracy, completeness, or reliability of the information presented Read More

Puck Henry
Puck Henry
Puck Henry is an editor for ePrimefeed covering all types of news.

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