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Agony


List Price: $29.98
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Product Details

  • Actors: Aleksey Petrenko, Anatoliy Romashin, Velta Line, Alisa Freyndlikh, Aleksandr Romantsov
  • Directors: Elem Klimov
  • Writers: Ilya Nusinov, Semyon Lungin
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Letterboxed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: Russian
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Kino
  • DVD Release Date: November 8, 2005
  • Run Time: 104 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000BB1980
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #158,477 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Agony" on IMDb

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

Anything but a standard bio-pic, Agony is an unrestrained assault on the ruling class in Russia, whose religious hedonism and political ignorance nearly destroyed the country. Influenced in part by such latter 20th Century phenomena as Charles Manson and The Exorcist, Klimov restaged world history with jolting doses of sexual avarice, drunkenness, violence and insanity in startling contract to staid historical accounts of Rasputin's life and most peculiar death.

Customer Reviews

Definitely the best film about this notorious man in Russian history.
Ekaterina Smoldyreva
One, it gives a very well rounded portrait of the Russian monarchy at the time, and the complete chaos in the house of Nicholas II (and Russia during his reign).
Grigory's Girl
With a sound track by Alfred Schnittke, this film is likely not to be comprehended without multiple viewings--the very definition of a complex work of art.
B.E.F.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

46 of 50 people found the following review helpful By Ekaterina Smoldyreva on November 7, 2005
Format: DVD
Definitely the best film about this notorious man in Russian history. Contrary to cheesy Hollywood versions portraying the monster opposite some youths in love, this film takes you to the reality of Russian ruling class in the early years of XX century. It is not about one person, it shows the agony of the whole system at the dawn of the October 1917 revolution. The Tzar with his weaknesses, the nobles with their arrogance and uselessness, the bureaucrats with their greed; and amongst them all, this strange and horrific figure who appeared out of nowhere as some kind of evil genius or, maybe, a personification of all Russian folk.

The film creates incredibly authentic atmosphere of the time, focusing mostly on macabre side(considering the subject). The acting is absolutely superb.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Grigory's Girl on April 30, 2007
Format: DVD
This is one of the greatest Russian films ever made, but it's not particularly well known in this country, even in cinema circles. It's directed by Elem Kilmov, who directed the masterful Come and See. The film is excellent for many reasons. One, it gives a very well rounded portrait of the Russian monarchy at the time, and the complete chaos in the house of Nicholas II (and Russia during his reign). Second, the portrayal of Rasputin here is amazing (by Alexi Pentrenko), and extremely accurate. He was a very unkept man, but he had amazing charisma and he had carte blanche in the household of Nicholas II (which he abused regularly). There are some wicked surreal touches that really make this film extraordinary. As an added bonus, this is the widescreen, uncut version. When the film made it to the states, the film was cut by 35 minutes. Previous VHS versions were also pan and scan, which butchered Kilmov's widescreen compositions. The film had difficulty in the USSR as well, because the Soviet censors felt that Kilmov was too sympathetic towards Nicholas II. It was made in 1974, but wasn't officially released until 1985. This is a great Russian film, one of the best portrayals of Rasputin and the fall of Nicholas II.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Alex Beere on September 17, 2007
Format: DVD
This movie is fantastic. If you're familiar with some of Klimov's other works you'll understand his knack for twisting the psyche of his audience with tormenting visions and macabre sound arrangements, and this film will certianly please you, if insanity is what you like. I find his movies must be watched several times to absorb their rich visual explosion fully, and I particularly love the use of stock footage of various stages of Russion history to better describe the plot and that which is going on surrounding the main characters. This movie is also hugely accurate and displays the true human existence behind the figures involved as it is rarely told. A must see, as the cliche goes.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By B.E.F. on December 18, 2014
Format: DVD
~~~

This film is exceedingly apropos of current events: a film of Russian history.

With a sound track by Alfred Schnittke, this film is likely not to be comprehended without multiple viewings--the very definition of a complex work of art. With multiple viewings however, one may see that the film makes perfect sense--although one is sure to be mystified first time out.

Klimov has deftly dovetailed historic Russian film footage from the 1910s with later historically simulated stock-footage from the 1920s and 1930s and current footage shot in black and white to look historic--all this combined with a majority of colour segments including logos symbols, to effect a representation of the splendour and chaos of Nicholas and Alexandra's autocracy and the Social Democratic Worker's revolution c.1916. In the middle of this was Rasputin who had gained mystical influence with Alexandra--(and hence with the Tsar)--whereby he interfered with the aristocratic agents in the Tsar's government thru influence peddling, appointment selling, war contract acquisition, et cetera. Ultimately of course Rasputin and the Tsar's monarchy were overthrown and executed, and Lenin's leadership prevailed in Russia.

...Read more ›
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By betoyamm on August 18, 2013
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
It is one of my favorite films: i liked the way it was made, the direction, the cast. It really is worth seeing
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
The cinematogrphy and artistic aspects of the film are excellent although there is more historical accuracy in this film than any other Rasputin film I have seen there are still a few problems, which don't really detract from the film. Anyone Interested in the subject should read "The Rasputin File" by Edvard Radzinsky.
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