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The Sun

Russia / Italy / Switzerland / France, 2004 (MIFF 2006, International Panorama)

Director: Alexander Sokurov

The Sun

“Wonderfully eccentric and fascinating.” - The New York Times

Celebrated Russian master, Aleksandr Sokurov, continues his portraits of fading totalitarian leaders with this epic work, the third in a series that first looked at Hitler (Moloch) then Lenin (Taurus) and now Japanese Emperor Hirohito who controversially renounced his divinity to be judged as a humble man after surrendering to Allied forces in 1945.

Describing the character of Hirohito as “an inexhaustible artistic object”, Sokurov doesn't see the emperor first and foremost as a deity but as a human being, deeply affected by tragedy that besets his country. Using low-lit sepia and foggy blue-greys to create a feel of lingering creepiness and dislocation, Sokurov fashions a film that is both mesmerising and demanding.

Screened at this year's Berlin Film Festival where it was nominated for a Golden Bear Award.

D Alexander Sokurov P Igor Kalenov, Andrei Sigle, Marco Müller S Yuri Arabov WS The Works International L English, Japanese TD 35mm/2004/110mins

Aleksandr Sokurov was born in Podorvikha, Russia, in 1951. His films include Days of the Eclipse (1988), Save and Protect (1989), Whispering Pages (1993), Confession (1998), Moloch (1999), Taurus (2001), Russian Ark (2002) and Father and Son (2003).

See also...


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Real life characters make up the cast of Dolce. They include celebrated Japanese author Toshio Shimao, who died in 1986, his widow and their daughter. The film serves as a framework to underline deep ... More »


'Moloch' is the name generally given to a divinity worshipped by various ancient cultures. Although sources differ on the details of Moloch's abominations, this idol is most often connected to the ... More »

Diary of st petersburg - mozart.requiem

Filmed in a single take, Alexander Sokurov's remarkable [Russian Ark] captured the imaginations of film-goers everywhere. This narrator of Russian culture and spirit takes us back to St Petersburg in ... More »

Robert: A Fortunate Life

Robert: A Fortunate Life is Sokurov's key pictorial account of the work of Hubert Robert (1733-1808), a French painter who was representative of what Sokurov calls 'classic virtuosity'. ... "Sokurov ... More »

Oriental Elegy

"What a strange dream.. a stork, a river, an old park, a voice, through the mist, the outline of a house becomes visible. The houses seem to push each other aside, they huddle together, they rock on ... More »

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