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Elegy of Life. Rostropovich. Visnevskaya

A great and lasting love story
By GERALD PEARY  |  August 13, 2008
3.0 3.0 Stars

Prolific Russian filmmaker Aleksandr Sokurov begins his TV documentary at a 50th-wedding celebration, the golden anniversary of Mstislav Rostropovich, master cellist and orchestral conductor, and his wife, lyric-opera star Galina Vishnevskaya. He’s democratic and gregarious, she’s imposing and tsarina-like — but what a great and lasting love story! Sokurov, an ardent admirer of both, toasts their music and their off-stage selves. He roams with his camera their palatial Russian home; he sits down with each for free-ranging, unusual conversations. Who else can you still talk to who knew Prokofiev and Shostakovich? They also befriended Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, and they sheltered the dissident writer in their home. That courageous stand led to their long political exile in the West; they were invited back only after the Soviet Union collapsed. Sokurov makes his position clear: these are true Russian patriots, their personal integrity matching the genius of their music. Russian + English | 101 Minutes | MFA: August 15, 17, 21, 23, 30

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  Topics: Reviews , Entertainment, Movies, Sergei Prokofiev,  More more >
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