Shadows Of Forgotten Ancestors

  • 1965
  • Movie
  • NR
  • Drama

Set in the western Ukrainian region of Ruthenia in the late 1800s, this film is a victory of visuals over narrative. The fiercely directed tale of love follows Ivan (played as a child by I. Dzyura, as an adult by Ivan Mikolaichuk), who, from the outset, is the victim of fate: his older brother is killed while trying to save the young boy from a falling...read more

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Set in the western Ukrainian region of Ruthenia in the late 1800s, this film is a victory of visuals over narrative. The fiercely directed tale of love follows Ivan (played as a child by I. Dzyura, as an adult by Ivan Mikolaichuk), who, from the outset, is the victim of fate: his older

brother is killed while trying to save the young boy from a falling tree, and his father is bludgeoned by an axe-wielding neighbor. It is also Mikolaichuk's fate to fall in love with Kadochnikova, the daughter of his father's murderer. The two young lovers romp through the forests and swim naked

in a watering hole. When Kadochnikova accidentally falls to her death, Mikolaichuk is destroyed; eventually, however, he marries Bestayeva in the hope that she will be able to bring him a family and happiness. Clearly preferring to tell his story abstractly rather than concretely, director Sergei

Paradzhanov assails viewers' eyes with streaks of color and rushes of camera movement, and their ears with sounds best described as revolutionary and industrial--some coming from the trembita, an elongated, trumpetlike folk instrument. This was the third film directed by the Georgian-born

Paradzhanov (he codirected another), and it is quite unlike most other Soviet films of the day--a nonpolitical, poetic study of emotions, mysticism, and love. After winning numerous international prizes for this film, Paradzhanov was allowed to make one more, THE COLOR OF POMEGRANATES, before

spending several years in Soviet labor camps. He returned to film in 1985 with THE LEGEND OF SURAM FORTRESS. The videocassette is subtitled in English.

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  • Rating: NR
  • Review: Set in the western Ukrainian region of Ruthenia in the late 1800s, this film is a victory of visuals over narrative. The fiercely directed tale of love follows Ivan (played as a child by I. Dzyura, as an adult by Ivan Mikolaichuk), who, from the outset, is… (more)

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