Review: Dear Comrades!

Dear Comrades!

As we slowly move our way back into cinemas, Dear Comrades!, shot entirely in stunning black and white, takes us back to an age that seems more and more forgotten as the decades roll on.

The USSR collapsed well over 30 years ago and any stories of lining up outside stores in the former USSR seem like a distant memory. In Dear Comrades!, we start the film with this discussion: prices have gone up, the lines are longer than ever, and no one can speak against the Party, which is supreme in all ways.  All of these are the stereotypes that have been identified with the Soviet state for years. 

Our protagonist Lyudmila is a devout Communist Party official and idealistic veteran of the second World War. Her faith in the system and all that she holds dear is suddenly shaken when a member of her own family is caught in a factory strike. As the narrative progresses, we follow Lyudmila’s journey in trying to keep her life intact, while being surrounded by a cracking social/political system.

How will Lyudmila reconcile with the emerging truths of a dictatorial state? How will her own life be turned upside down by the turmoil outside of her? Strikes, state sponsored violence, and a stark look at what the Soviet Union was in the years after Stalin, Dear Comrades! will especially be a compelling watch for all those history-loving audiences and those who revel in the nostalgia of the USSR.

Dear Comrades! is playing in cinemas around the city, including at Cinema du Parc