The View From the Other Side

I just finished watching an odd little picture I’d never heard of on Netflix—August. Eighth. It’s a Russian movie, set in the context of the Russo-Georgian War of 2008. It’s not dubbed (subtitled) so you need to be able to tolerate that to watch it. My Russian’s good enough that I followed most of it but I found the subtitles helpful, particularly during some of the action scenes. Of course, I’d find subtitles helpful during a Michael Bay picture and August. Eighth was pretty clearly influenced by Michael Bay pictures.

It presents a side of the war that’s pretty darned different from what we got in the press. Pretty romanticized. There’s a Medvedev character and a Putin character, both very handsome and charismatic.

The actual story is about a woman who send her eight year old son to visit his father from whom she is divorced on the Russian-Georgian border so she can go off for the weekend with her boyfriend. When war breaks out she goes to incredible lengths to reach her son. A lot of magical realism in the parts told from the point of view of the kid.

I found it pretty entertaining throughout, the heroine is pretty, the Russian soldiers are handsome and heroic. Interesting to get a different point of view.

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