In post-WWII Leningrad, two women, Iya and Masha (astonishing newcomers Viktoria Miroshnichenko and Vasilisa Perelygina), intensely bonded after fighting side by side as anti-aircraft gunners, attempt to readjust to a haunted world. As the film begins, Iya, long and slender and towering over everyone—hence the film’s title—works as a nurse in a shell-shocked hospital, presiding over traumatized soldiers. A shocking accident brings them closer and also seals their fates. The 28-year-old Russian director Kantemir Balagov... Full synopsis »
Beanpole follows an extra-tall nurse (nicknamed Beanpole) who, following the war, suffers from PTSD-fueled seizures that causes her to black out at unexpected times. Unfortunately this leads her to accidentally suffocating her roommate’s son to death, which in turn leads to a blackmail scheme where she “agrees” to be raped by her boss to have a replacement child.
Cheerful in a really fucked up, dark kind of way.
Beanpole continues from there in unpredictable fashion, a story built upon the strange and illogical actions of two women shaped by war in two drastically different and horrible ways. The third act doesn’t entirely hit home as it fails to live up to the expectations set early on, but Beanpole is an intriguing and complex character study nonetheless. Full movie review »