Writer, literary scholar, cinephile, Wellesian

Favorite films

  • Chimes at Midnight
  • La Dolce Vita
  • The Human Condition I: No Greater Love
  • GoodFellas

Recent activity

  • Much Ado About Nothing


  • Hedgehog in the Fog


  • The Cat in the Hat


  • F for Fake


Recent reviews

  • Much Ado About Nothing

    Much Ado About Nothing


    No Shakespearean play was as popular in the Soviet Union as Much Ado About Nothing. One of four (!) adaptations made in communist Europe over the course of four decades, Samsonov’s Much Ado more than makes up for the cut material with its excellent performances, grand scale and beyond beautiful cinematography and production design.

    A beyond charming feel-good movie. I actually enjoyed it more than Branagh’s adaptation.

  • Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors

    Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors


    In times when the substantive cultural identity of Ukraine is not only denied, but actively being destroyed, the importance of reexamining its portrayal in narrative and poetic art should not be underestimated.

    Though the notion of the Hutsuls being some sort of primordial, ‘authentic’ Ukrainians that were ‘preserved’ because of their remote location is not entirely correct, this deeply moving and impressive representation of ancient tradition and motor behind the poetic cinema of 1960s Ukraine, holding a perfect middle between narrativity and poetic quality, is a must see.

    Слава Україні!

Popular reviews

  • Pebbles



    Even though I had planned not to review any IFFR movies, seeing all the low ratings and negative reviews Pebbles is getting so far on this app made me reconsider.
    (EDIT: I’m very glad to see that the ratings are now a lot higher than they were initially!)

    I suppose that, upon reading the description, the many viewers that expressed themselves negatively must have expected a father-son roadmovie in the tradition of Paper Moon. They must have been disappointed to find out…

  • Mank


    I can’t rate this movie, and I’ll tell you why.

    First I’d like to state the following:
    Mank is visually stunning, the score is fabulous, Gary Oldman is pretty good and technically this might be one of the best movies to have come out this year.

    But then...

    Mank misses the spirit, sentiment and sharpness (at some point the movie leans into politics, and fails to prove any point at all; it’s just kinda boring and angry. Mank is, at its heart, a…