- Excellent Movie!!! 4/13/2006 12:00:00 AM by las_vegas_rebel
There is an absolutely fabulous Foreign Action, Drama, War Movie put out by the Russian film industry called " Svolochi " or " Bastards " as the English translation goes. " Svolochi " or " Bastards " is a current 2006 release directed by Aleksandr Atanesyan -- clearly, Atanesyan will be a name to remember. With excellent cinematography by Dmitriy Youshenkov, " Svolochi " features a cast of young stars portraying the young " Bastards " who range in ages from 12 to 17 and who have come from dysfunctional backgrounds, raised themselves from the gutters and learned the craft in the world of crime, murder, and mayhem. They have been caught by the police and are sent to a secret desolate military training base run by Nachalnik Vishnevskiy, convincingly portrayed by Andrei Panin. Vishnevskiy is a Russian military commandant trained to do covert activities -- and a man who has little to live for in the sense that he has lost his wife and child and has little else to live for. Here in their desolate lair, Vishnevskiy and his staff of military experts train the boys to work with explosives, scale rocky crests and cliffs, and handle military weapons -- but they know all too well how to handle weapons already. And as the boys continue to abuse each other with their own deceptive and conniving ways, Vishnevskiy and his men develop a respect if not bond with and for the young boys. As first one, and then another of the young ones are killed in accidents and murder, the boys decide it is nearing their time to break away from their military confines. But all too late come their plans as Vishnevskiy is given his orders to prepare the first group for their mission. The movie poignantly and superbly unfolds to reveal a climactic conclusion that staggers the mind with the possibility of reality and the hellish ordeal the " Bastards" must face -- making the " Svolochi " a new must see future classic of Russian films -- absolutely, moving, eloquent, and superbly crafted.
- So bad 5/9/2007 12:00:00 AM by anastasia-s
Foreigners might not know but in Russia the movie was at first promoted as "absolutely true story" which the author of the book survived himself. Thats why the attention to it was so great (to say nothing of the persistent advertising).
And then it turned out, quite all of a sudden, it was just the author's fantasy, it's not true, no kids were made terminators in the soviet time and sent to Nazis to heroically die. and there are even documents proving that is what Nazis tried to do!
The trick as you may have understood is soooo bad! To draw attention at any price? To rewrite history blaming soviet people for what they had never done? OK, we are grownups, we can just ignore the movie or its historical part, but what to do with kids who watched it... Alongside with the ongoing brainwashing how bad everything was at the soviet time. Making them ashamed for the past?
If our ministry of culture thinks suitable to sponsor such movies, i don't know what for culture they have there.
Apart from the history, the producers did everything to get tears out of us - poor kids in so hard conditions: hard life made them criminals (ah so) cruel power makes them kamikaze (oh really). such a fake. Would you watch this movie if characters were not that young?
And big thanks to Menshov, the producer of "Moscow doesn't believe in tears", a good movie made in the soviet time, for his refusing to give the award to Svolochi at some MTV ceremony. That was unbelievable and wonderful!
And today it's Victory Day in Russia and i would like to say thanks to all the people who saved the world from Nazis, who were dying for the better future for us. we will never forget that! We are immensely grateful!
- Surprisingly well done 4/12/2006 12:00:00 AM by GypsyGeo
I was surprised by the quality of this film. Sure, the ending was hyped, but just look at American films. (Boys on bicycles flying past the moon?) Why can't foreign films use a little hype now and then. Nobody seems to claim this is a true story, and it isn't. It is a boys' fantasy. Perhaps a bit too much blood and gore to get a PG rating, but part from a few swear words (Mother who?) well I've seen worse. Quite a few kids are killed and suffer violence, Not much worse than "Goblet of Fire" really, but I think, if anything, they pulled their punches in the training scenes. Real kids commando training is very much rougher than they showed. I'd be happy for teens over the age of fifteen to watch it. The film deals with the subjects of attitudes to boys, boy bashing, and the use of child soldiers. It also has a lot of moral issues that can be discussed. On the whole, I'd like to see a film with English dubbing. it would be worth it. Well done, guys. The kids acted well, too.
- Where's my gun? 4/23/2007 12:00:00 AM by scaramouche2004-2
In the process of watching this "war drama" you feel like vomiting - so bad is the movie. Boring, embarrassing, dull, made by people with a total absence of talent. Moreover, the movie is totally embarrassing for our country and our people. Millions of soviet people died during the WWII, and now those, who survived and won can do absolutely nothing to a fact, that they, their battle comrades, the whole nation - all is mixed with sh*t. Why do we make such movies? Is there nothing about the war to be filmed? There are lots of stories to be told, lots of heroes to be shown. Why inventing a story, that has never happened? Damn this movie!!
- Rather arid and uneven creation elevated by distinct young performances 11/19/2015 12:00:00 AM by BeneCumb
In "socialist" times Russian films were always and everywhere, with very few Western films shown, thus, in recent decades, I have not felt any particular urge to (re)watch Russian films, especially post-Soviet ones. But we all have our weaknesses and curiosities :) plus incidents happen...
Svolochi is meant to be a historical film, about WWII in the rear area far away from actual battles (somewhere in Kazakshtan), but it has turned out that it is all pure fiction - presented not very convincingly, with the exception of Russian crime scene and obscene language perhaps (not accurately translated into English). Reactions to the boys' behaviour and language by military personnel are odd, if not more, and adult military characters are atypical to the Stalin era - they seem hesitant, weak, speaking mostly gently, and the actors performing them are not front-rank... The ending dating back to 1943 is hectic and airy-fairy, and the very ending is quite ridiculous, taking into account modern opportunities in finding former acquaintances.
The film is "saved" by two good performances - Alexander Golovin as Kot and Sergey Rychakov as Tjapa; they squeeze the best/most out of this inconsistent story and focusing on their chemistry enables to wend your way through this 1.5 hour film without wtf! attitudes. But still, Svolochi is not a film you definitely must see, particularly if you have some knowledge of Russian values and language.