The Cranes Are Flying


A poignant wartime romance

One of the first cinematic fruits of Russia’s post-Stalinist thaw, Mikhail Kalatozov’s wartime romance picked up the Palme d’Or at Cannes. Young lovers Veronika and Boris are sundered by war when Boris goes missing in action. Persuaded into a loveless marriage with Boris’ opportunistic cousin, Veronika never gives up hope of his return.

With convincing characters, virtuoso camerawork and a poignant performance from Tatyana Samojlova as Veronika, it’s a poetic, humane movie that all but avoids the sloganising that mars so many Soviet-era films.




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