In the city of Novocherkassk in 1962, striking laborers are shot to death by the military and a loyal party worker (Julia Vysotskaya) desperately tries to find her missing daughter during the chaotic aftermath. A stark account of actual events where the authorities did everything to cover up mistakes and blame the striking workers rather than the men who ordered the massacre. Focus lies on a woman who has devoted her life to the Communist Party, but whose conviction is shaken when she realizes that she may have sacrificed her child. Meticulously researched by the director; dramatic at times, with a good, emotional lead performance.
2020-Russia. 120 min. B/W. Produced by Alisher Usmanov. Directed by Andrei Konchalovsky. Screenplay: Andrei Konchalovsky, Elena Kiseleva. Cast: Julia Vysotskaya (Lyudmila ”Lyuda” Syomina), Vladislav Komarov (Loginov), Yuliya Burova (Svetka), Andrey Gusev, Sergei Erlish, Alexander Maskelyne.
Trivia: Original title: Dorogie tovarishchi!.
Venice: Special Jury Prize.
Last word: “[Yuri Bagrayev] was the prosecutor who oversaw the 1992 investigation of the Novocherkassk’s events, and he gave me loads of inside information. As you can imagine, a lot of that was never published, so his help was invaluable. I wanted him to be completely satisfied with what we were doing, because there had been several documentaries and even some series on what had happened down there… and he was very upset with how those had turned out. I needed to be as meticulous and rigorous as I could. ” (Konchalovsky, Mubi)