Leviathan is an indictment of corruption-ridden modern Russia. Unlike most victims of a crooked official, Kolya has an old army buddy who is now a smart lawyer. Yet the only weapon available is a ‘dirt file’ on the mayor. In the Bible, the leviathan is a sea monster described as too big for men to subdue. At one level the whale skeleton provides a metaphor for a rotten system too powerful and ruthless to fight. But it’s not quite that simple: the victims here are pretty good at betraying each other—not to mention hitting the vodka bottle too hard. And perhaps that makes a point about the understandably demoralised population of this sad country. Reference is made to the Biblical suffering of Job. Is the wider problem the vicissitudes of life itself? Maybe. But the final scene of the complacent bishop carrying on about ‘truth’ pinpoints what is lacking in Russia. As well as the rule of law and democracy, there must be means for truth to be made known through a genuinely free media. What did you think of Leviathan?

4 Responses to Monstrous

  1. Yvonne & Geoff Holmes August 9, 2015 at 9:08 pm #

    Disturbing is the best description I can find for this film. Whilst Leviathan could certainly not be described as entertaining it was challenging to watch. The scenery and cinematography were excellent and this was accentuated by the lack of any soundtrack for the majority of the movie.

  2. Lorraine & Peter Duffy August 11, 2015 at 5:02 pm #

    I’m happy we get such a variety of films, Leviathan was not one of my favourites- and a film I would not normally go to however I enjoyed it for the originality and photography. Shame it was so cold in the hall but I guess it added to the misery that was portrayed .

  3. Jill Dent August 18, 2015 at 5:47 pm #

    I found Leviathan a very strong and courageous statement against corruption in the Russian political system. The final scene highlighting the corruption within a part of the Russian Orthodox church was surprising in its outspokenness. Beautiful if bleak land and seascapes and an inspiring house emphasised the isolation and unfairness of treatment to a man who had done nothing to warrant his treatment – except protestation. When the real monster – the wrecking machine – crawled into the area we had come to love, we were horrified. It must have riveting,

  4. Jane August 19, 2015 at 3:52 pm #

    Most Russian films, books etc always end in tears…I think the tears could have been confirmed in 1 hour not 240 minutes out! Editing would have greatly improved this movie.

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