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A reverie of militarism, family turmoil, and weird eroticism
By PETER KEOUGH  |  June 17, 2008
3.0 3.0 Stars
ALEKSANDRA: Human drama from Aleksandr Sokurov.

One advantage to having a war zone right next door is that your grandmother can drop by for a visit. Set ostensibly in battle-weary Chechnya, Aleksandr Sokurov’s new reverie takes up the themes of militarism, family turmoil, and weird eroticism he explored in such previous films as Father and Son. The old woman of the title, stout and sturdy as a fireplug, takes an “armored train” to the outpost where her grandson is an officer. The soldiers in the camp treat her with bemused awe and annoyance — she’s a reminder of normality and home, but she also won’t stay put, wandering about the camp, chatting with sentries, straying into minefields, venturing beyond the gates to a local market. There she bonds more readily with the old Chechen women selling cigarettes than with her estranged flesh-and-blood and his mysterious missions to do she knows not what. Less visually exultant than Sokurov’s best, but in its human drama adding grit to his mythmaking. Russian + Chechen | 92 minutes | Kendall Square
  Topics: Reviews , Alexander Sokurov
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