"Total Balalaika Show"
Directed by Aki Kaurismaki
At the end of the Cold War, the renowned Alexandrov
Red Army Ensemble of Russia performed with Finland's outrageous rock n'
rollers the Leningrad Cowboys. The event drew 70,000 people and involved two
nations that were at war a half century ago. Acclaimed filmmaker Aki
Kaurismaki effectively captures the glorious, hilarious, and poignant
splendor of that weird and wild performance in this one-of-a-kind concert
movie. What seems an impossible combination of musical styles and tastes
becomes a sublime cosmic experience, especially when the Red Army musicians
pick up their traditional balalaikas to join the Cowboys on Bob Dylan's "Knockin'
on Heaven's Door". "The most inspired cross-cultural pairing since Nureyev
danced with Miss Piggy" (Variety). 55 minutes.