For the wondrously sour-mouthed Vassa Zheleznova (Churikova), troubles come not in threes but in great swinging clusters. Her husband is accused of child-molesting, her brother is a lush who has got the maid pregnant, one of her daughters is 'wrong in the head', while the other is scampering through puberty towards nymphean alcoholism. Add murder, suicide and hefty dollops of greed, and you have Maxim Gorky's version of Dynasty on the Volga, with the ripples extending out to embrace imminent revolution. Set in 1913, this presents a portrait of a society fit for rupture, viewed with sad disgust. Panfilov wisely never forces the pace, letting the richness of the piece come through in a host of finely tailored performances. An unexpected delight.