The Cranes Are Flying (Letjat Zhuravli)


(out of 5)

Imagine if The Umbrellas of Cherbourg wasn’t a musical and was photographed in dreamy black and white and you’d have this lush Russian melodrama. When her lover goes off to war, a now unhappy young lady weighs the difficult issues that face her while she’s waiting for him to (possibly not) come back. The story is really quite secondary; what matters here is the intense acting and the gorgeous visuals that accompany all the rich displays of emotion. Images will remain in your mind for a long time afterwards.


USSR, 1957

Directed by

Screenplay by , based on his play

Cinematography by

Produced by Mikhail Kalatozov

Music by

Production Design by

Costume Design by

Film Editing by

Cannes Film Festival 1958

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