For me ,this is Andrey Zvyagintsev's best film so far.A film maker who wants his audience to interact with his work and not have to be told what to think! A director who is inspired by Antonioni,Bergman and Tarkovsky.His style may not be to everybodies taste,but to people who want film to challenge them occassionally,his a name to check-out and follow. "The Banishment" is a good starting point on the journey ahead.
As interesting as his debut film, Zvyagintsev's The Banishment introduces thoughts on 3 relationships: husband and wife, brother and brother, father and son. My full review is at http://moviessansfrontiers.blogspot.in/2007/12/51-russian-director-andrei-zvyagintsevs.html
Reminiscent of the sinister, unspoken solitude of "The Return", with its graceful camera movement and wonderful music. It skirts moral judgement in favour of communicating a massive sense of loss, and of men unable to express the impotence and rage that lies beneath their codes of honour.
It's truly a masterpiece, as it was "The Return". It's a pity it has been so massively overlooked by the critics, it should have received more prizes. It's beautifully directed and the plot is not at all thinly constructed; there's more to it than what we are shown. Even if its length can be off-putting for some, "The Banishment" holds us captive from beginning until the end. It left me with a desire to replay it.