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"Oh yes - the dreadful bits were dreadful but the splended bits were more than splendid and in the majority. The main character is Russia and it s character. The trees were Milhalkov's final cast - so rich in beauty and nobility - emblematic of Russia herself. Yes. it was too theatrical - but in the same way as a 1950s Hollywood musical. I laughed out loud. But mostly it was a socialist movie made by a socialist director who is passionately in love with his country - so that I had to sheild my eyes from the horror of the murder of the majestic the trees . Three hours too long! I could have watched it forever - such beauty! But the American temptress brings with her the Amerian capitalist indiscriminate saw. Pity about Julia Ormonde ! For that it loses 2 stars."

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