Directed by Elem Klimov • 1985 • Soviet Union
Starring Aleksei Kravchenko, Olga Mironova
This widely acclaimed film from Soviet director Elem Klimov is a stunning, senses-shattering plunge into the dehumanizing horrors of war. As Nazi forces encroach on his small village in Belarus, teenage Flyora (Aleksei Kravchenko, in one of the screen’s most searing depictions of anguish since Renée Falconetti’s Joan of Arc) eagerly joins the Russian resistance. Rather than the adventure and glory he envisioned, what he finds is a waking nightmare of unimaginable carnage and cruelty—rendered with a feverish, otherworldly intensity by Klimov’s subjective camerawork and expressionistic sound design. Nearly suppressed by Soviet censors who took eight years to approve its script, COME AND SEE is perhaps the most visceral, impossible-to-forget antiwar film ever made.