WAR AND PEACE
VOYNA I MIR
1967, Janus Films, 421 min, Soviet Union, Dir: Sergey Bondarchuk

At the height of the Cold War, the Soviet film industry set out to prove it could outdo Hollywood with a production that would dazzle the world: a titanic, awe-inspiring adaptation of Tolstoy’s classic tome in which the fates of three souls - the blundering, good-hearted Pierre; the heroically tragic Prince Andrei; and the radiant, tempestuous Natasha - collide amid the tumult of the Napoleonic Wars. Employing a cast of thousands and an array of innovative camera techniques, Bondarchuk conjures a sweeping vision of grand balls that glitter with rococo beauty and breathtaking battles that overwhelm with their expressionistic power. As a statement of Soviet cinema’s might, WAR AND PEACE succeeded wildly, garnering the Academy Award for Best Foreign-Language Film and setting a new standard for epic moviemaking. "You are never, ever, going to see anything to equal it ... as spectacular as a movie can possibly be." - Roger Ebert.


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