Van Goghs

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Russia | 2018 | 102 minutes | Sergey Livnev

A famed, aging conductor with dementia and his talented but troubled artist son are forced to set aside their differences before it’s too late in this emotional melodrama featuring Russia and Poland’s two biggest stars.

Two of the most excellent and experienced actors from Poland and Russia team up in Van Goghs, an old-fashioned emotional melodrama about a father and a son. Daniel Olbrychski (Taras Bulba, Dekalog, The Tin Drum) plays Viktor Samuilovich, a famous workaholic conductor who at 79 is showing the first signs of dementia. Aleksey Serebryakov (Leviathan) plays his 52-year-old son, Mark, a tortured artist who has never felt fulfilled and who has been living away from his overbearing father in Israel. (In March, Serebryakov won a Russian Nika Award for his performance.) They have not seen each other for some time and come together for Viktor's concert. Regardless of their best intentions, they derail each other the moment they are together. The main location of Van Goghs is Viktor's old Victorian home in Riga, which looks like a museum and a jungle of creeping vines and wallpapers, with Irina (Elena Koreneva) there to serve tea for Viktor as she has for 30 years. Such familiar surroundings do not help these two men feel comfortable, yet there is something noble about their efforts to find a way back inside each other's orbits.

Maryna Ajaja

Director Biography
Sergey Livnev is a director, producer, and writer from Moscow, Russia, who now lives in London, England and Jurmala, Latvia. He studied cinematography and scriptwriting at the Film Institute VGIK. His films Hammer and Sickle (1994) and Kiks (1992) received national and international acclaim after participating in the Kinotavr Film Festival. Van Goghs (2018) is his second feature film.

Sponsored by Aegis Living, Seattle Polish Film Festival

  • Original Language Title: Van Gogi
  • Director: Sergey Livnev
  • Principal Cast: Aleksey Serebryakov, Daniel Olbrychski, Elena Koreneva, Polina Agureeva
  • Premiere Status: North American Premiere
  • Country: Russia, Latvia, United Kingdom
  • Year: 2018
  • Running Time: 102 minutes
  • Producer: Sergey Bozba, Sergey Livnev
  • Screenplay: Sergey Livnev
  • Cinematographers: Yuriy Klimenko
  • Editors: Aleksey Bobrov, Ernest Aranov
  • Music: Leonid Desyatnikov, Aleksey Sergunin
  • Website: Official Film Website
  • Awards: Nika Awards 2019 (Best Actor, Supporting Actress, Cinematography, Score)
  • Filmography: Hammer and Sickle (1994); Cracked (1991)
  • Language: Russian
  • Has Subtitles: Yes
  • Format: DCP
  • International Sales: Loco Films