Prisoner Of The Mountains (1996)


Bil’s rating (out of 5):   BBB.5

Original title:  Kavkazskiy Plennik

Russia/Kazakhstan, 1996.  Karavan.  Screenplay by ,Sergey Bodrov, , based on the story by .  Cinematography by .  Produced by Sergey Bodrov, , Boris Giller, .  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by , , .  

Russian soldiers enter the Caucausus mountains on what they think will be a routine raid but end up being ambushed by Islamic separatists. Two of them are taken prisoner and installed in the home of a Chechen bigwig until such time as he is able to negotiate with their superiors: his son is in a Russian prison, and he will return the soldiers in exchange for him. While enduring this captivity, the two men find themselves developing a surprising friendship, one that arises between two people who would never have anything in common otherwise, and learn plenty about their captors as well. It’s not a film that hits very deep, and its characters aren’t particularly interesting, but it takes you somewhere and the experience is memorable. Based on a short story by Leo Tolstoy.

Academy Award Nomination:  Best Foreign Language Film

European Film Award:  Best European Screenwriter

Golden Globe Award Nomination:  Best Foreign Language Film

Toronto International Film Festival:  1996

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