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Silent Souls (Ovsyanki)

Directed by Aleksei Fedorchenko with Igor Sergeyev, Yuri Tsurilo, Yuliya Aug


2010, Russia Silent Souls is a stunningly shot film based on the novel "The Buntings" by Aist Sergeyev. When Miron's beloved wife Tanya passes away, he asks his best friend Aist to help him say goodbye to her according to the rituals of the Merja culture, an ancient Finno-Ugric tribe from Lake Nero, a picturesque region in West-Central Russia. Although the Merja people assimilated into Russians in the 17th century, their myths and traditions live on in their descendants' modern life. The two men set out on a road trip thousands of miles across the boundless lands; along the way emerges a shadowy love triangle between the men and the memory of the woman they both loved.

Best Cinematography and FIPRESCI Prize, Venice Film Festival; Best Director, Best Screenplay, Mar del Plata International Film Festival (Spain). Official selection: Toronto International Film Festival, New York Film Festival, Abu Dhabi Film Festival, Rotterdam International Film Festival.

“One of the most remarkable cinematic balancing acts I’ve witnessed in quite some time. Silent Souls manages to incorporate an elegiac narrative movement alongside a somewhat straightforward, nearly essayistic examination of the ethnographic inheritances of the Merjan minority in Russia… In terms of activating the classic Eastern spirituality of the elements, the territory of Tarkovsky and Paradjanov, I kept thinking about how many other Russian filmmakers today try so hard to do what Fedorchenko appears to have done so naturally.” –Michael Sicinski, CARGO Film/Medien/Kultur

July inaugurates Festival Focus, an annual celebration of select international films, winners of awards and critical acclaim at major festivals in the previous year.  We hope you share our excitement in bringing to Boston the most talked about titles of 2010, many of which have also appeared on the “Best of 2010” polls of prominent film magazines such as Film Comment, Sight and Sound, and Cinema Scope. In a climate where distinctive cinematic visions fight to be heard over the hum of mainstream Hollywood, Festival Focus strives to support both the filmmakers at the vanguard of 21st century cinema and the audiences seeking out the new, the bold and the original.

Silent Souls

Silent Souls

Silent Souls

July 22 @ 8:45pm

Bright Family Screening Room



$10. $7.50 for Members & Seniors. $5 for Students.



Running Time:

75 minutes


Color, 35mm
Russian with English subtitles