films seen
average score
Alive and kicking
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2020 / 134m - Russia
Action, Sci-fi
Invasion poster

A rather straight-forward sequel to Bondarchuk's Attraction. There are some reveals and twists in the first half that cast a different light on the ending of the first film, but that's little more than an excuse to redo the whole invasion thing with the same cast all over again. Plus a handful of novelties to keep things interesting.

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Where the first film started with a bang, Invasion keeps its most impressive scenes for the finale. This may be a bit more traditional, but it also makes more sense this way. The only downside is that the middle part feels a little lost, as it's mostly just a plot transition between the reveals at the beginning and the big finale at the end.

The hefty budget is definitely a plus, the visual effects looked pretty impressive and it's always nice to have the proper level of destruction when an alien race invades Earth. The soundtrack is decent, though a little too poppy, performances are solid but nothing remarkable. Overall a fun and entertaining blockbuster, looking forward to the third (and possibly final?) part.


2017 / 117m - Russia
Sci-fi, Romance
Attraction poster

Russian sci-fi meets young adult. It's a weird premise, but the film is actually better than it sounds. The sci-fi elements were well executed and the young adult romance isn't quite as pervasive or juvenile as usually the case in the American counterparts. The result is a film that entertains.

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The first twenty minutes or so are quite impressive, with an alien spaceship crashing down in Moscow (while causing quite a bit of destruction). The film slows down after that and focuses on a human/alien bond that is used extensively to provide some (critical) comments on the human race.

Performances are decent, the effects and designs look impressive, the cinematography is modern and snappy and the score is fitting, though a little too poppy at times. It's nice to see Russia isn't skimping on making big budget genre cinema. It's a bit long though and Bondarchuk can't match the impressive beginning, but I'm looking forward to the sequel.

9th Company

9 Rota
2005 / 139m - Russia
9th Company poster

Russian war flick that conforms to Kubrick's Full Metal Jacket. We meet the boys, we go through the drill training with them, and we follow them into battle. The action scenes are decent and it's nice to see something else than the American wars for a change, but the film's too long and I'm no fan of the classic war film template, so this still felt a little too familiar.