Wandering minstrel Ashik Kerib falls in love with a wealthy merchant’s daughter, but is spurned by her father and forced to roam the world for a thousand and one nights, to accumulate riches in order to marry her.
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Do Russian directors have special sense of beauty? How can they make such beautiful scenes? I especially loved the dance of a girl and a woman. The story is quite abstract, befitting the designation 'oriental fairy-tale'. Nonetheless, it's a beautiful and glorifying story of powerless people of virtues.
A rich folkloric film which would seem very middle eastern, but is in fact based on a story by Russian author Mikhail Lermontov. So it's basically a very kitsch production, but a high quality one... the kind that ends up dedicated to Tarkovsky.
I feel I must employ a term of praise usually reserved for psych rock: face-melting. This is indeed, of the four Parajanov projects I have now seen, the most powerfully redolent of a psychedelic drug experience. Whereas POMEGRANATES and SURAM FORTRESS are extremely precise and formally controlled, this one feels like it might become unmoored at any point, centrifugal force sending it spiralling off into the beyond.
“Get up, teacher. Minstrels only die on the road. Your journey’s not over yet.” This is just obviously the best film ever made. Or… the worst? One of the two. (Both?) Consider what it means to be Parajanov’s weirdest film: Ecstatic, decadent, riotous camp. Hilarious/earnest subversions. An alchemy of energies/effects. A surrealistic rapture; ridiculous as transcendent. There is literally no option but to give it a 5
Parajanov's last finished film doesn't achieve the level of his previous films, although it has all the same elements: surreal folklore, beautiful cinematography, anthropological viewpoint (plus great music this time). The story is told in episodes but still rather straightforwardly and not with enough strength. Some scenes felt a bit campy, partly because of the acting but also because the mood was not right.