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Tuesday, October 01, 2013

Event Preview: Moscow Does Not Believe In Tears (1980) d. Vladimir Menshov @ Pomegranate Golden Hill San Diego WED/THURS

Moscow Does Not Believe In Tears shows in Golden Hill this week.



Event Preview:
Moscow Does Not Believe In Tears (1980)
 d. Vladimir Menshov @ Pomegranate Golden Hill San Diego
WED/THURS THIS WEEK\730 PM/FREE
(Moscow Does Not Believe In Tears IMDB)

  The San Diego Russian/Georgian restaurant Pomegranate recently opened a second location around the corner from the Golden Hill 7-11 at 25th and Broadway.  Up until now I've been more of a Counterpoint guy (vs. Luigis, Turf Club, Krakatoa, Golden Hill Cafe) but Pomegranate has drawn my attention.  First, they introduced out door seating, which San Diego recently legalized.

 Second, they are showing Russian films during the week at 730 PM.  It appears to be a bit of a work in progress, perhaps as they try to draw an Audience for these movies- I can't imagine there are many people out there who even know this is happening, and the subset within that group of people who would actually go is probably limited to "friends of people who work at the restaurant who have an interest in foreign movies."

 That is why I wanted to write to draw attention to the fact that this is happening: Every week, always on Wednesday's and Thursday's, Pomegranate Golden Hill shows a Russian language film at 730 PM.  This week the movie is Moscow Does Not Believe In Tears.  Moscow Does Not Believe In Tears won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Film in 1981.

 I won't waste another sentence trying to pitch the film, but I will note that there is a social facet of Film as an art form that is (obviously) completely neglected when you watch movies on your couch on your television.  Even if you have a small group it is not the same. The creation of the social space around the viewing of a film is something very integral to the appeal of film as an art form to a large portion of the Audience.  For example, you can think of teenagers who have no place to interact with their romantic/sexual partners.  There is also the related idea of movie watching as "something to do," a social activity.  Again, this function is totally defeated by home streaming.

  On a personal note, of all the different nations that are represented within the Criterion Collection, I have found the Russian titles to be the "best" in terms of an index that combines watchability and technical/aesthetic interest.  I have't seen Moscow Does Not Believe in Tears but it looks like a very watchable film, and winning an Academy Award for Best Foreign Film during the Cold War is quite an achievement.  I believe much of the reason Russian film is neglected in the U.S. stems from neglect inflicted during the Cold War by America based film scholars.

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