Sunday, May 23, 2021

"Russian Bride" - more gross than gritty

Hello commies,

A few weeks ago I reviewed another movie about the so-called immigrant experience. Here is another review of a movie featuring a foreign damsel in distress caught in the throes of her American nightmare, Michael Ojeda's The Russian Bride


A Russian woman travels to America with her daughter to marry a reclusive billionaire, who turns out to be a psycho who sends their lives spiraling into a living hell.

My thoughts:

If you watch it as a straight up torture porn with implausible "deus ex machina" twists, you can give it 3 stars. Don't let the title fool you. This movie does nothing to educate the audiences about the plight of international marriages. This is not a story of a deceived mail order bride overcoming adversity. The movie does reinforce some unsavory stereotypes. If you are a Russian divorcee in your 30s with a kid corresponding with an American multi-millionaire, this is NOT a cautionary tale. Most American men are not sadistic sociopaths, as most Russian women seeking husbands oversees are not meek, accommodating lambs with angelic children. This is lazy character development and an insult to American audiences. So the fact that the female protagonist happens to be Russian is not crucial to plot development. Substitute Russian with any other nationality. She could have as well been Asian or Latin American. As for the plot itself, it tries to tackle some serious bio-ethical issues, but it does it in such a blaring, silly, over the top and unconvincing way, that you will find yourself rolling your eyes. I almost feel bad for the actors, trying to do their best with a flippant, immature script. 

Thursday, May 6, 2021

Most Beautiful Island - the protagonist you want to strangle

Greetings, commies!

As an immigrant myself, I am intrigued by the portrayal of immigrants in film. I get it, every story is unique, and not every story results in the achievement of the American Dream. Here is a psychological thriller/horror film Most Beautiful Island featuring white immigrant experience - the two main characters are Spanish and Russian, respectively. 

I don't know if the director intended to make the protagonist Luciana incredibly annoying and unsympathetic. You almost want something bad to happen to this woman. Contrary to what the synopsis suggests, this is not a true immigrant survival tale. This woman is not fighting for survival. She is flippantly soul-searching and avoiding responsibility after letting her own kid die in an accident. She thinks that caring for other people's children or cleaning houses is beneath her, because she is European. She is looking to make a lot of money under the table without getting her hands dirty. She endangers the children in her care and she damages expensive garments so she doesn't have to pay for them. So don't be surprised if you find yourself wishing that she got what she deserves. This is no "Dirty Pretty Things".