The film “The Island”, which appeared on the screens in Russia in 2006, stirred up Russian film goers because the theme of repentance and expiation for committed sins, which has not lost its urgency for mankind, was revealed there so piercingly that everybody agreed that Lungin’s new film was a big event in the Russian art. Is his new creation - “The Conductor”- also an outstanding work of art that could be compared with “The Island”?
A famous conductor goes to Jerusalem with his orchestra to make a guest appearance there. The musicians want to play an oratorio, “Mattheus Passion”, in the Holy Land. For each of them the unusual concert trip becomes a trip deep into their soul. “Regrettably, there’re no films in Russia throwing light on people’s inner life or on the inner life of a family”, Pavel Lungin said in an interview with the Voice of Russia.
“I tried to show that shame and a one-moment feeling of repentance can change people’s lives – no matter whether they are old or young. And my film is just for all those who feel that way”, Pavel Lungin says.
Naturally, in the film “The Conductor” music is on par with the characters. The oratorio “Mattheus Passion” was composed by one of the hierarchs of the Russian Orthodox Church – Metropolitan Hilarion, who got a musical education at the Moscow Conservatoire. “Mattheus Passion” is a work telling us about the earthly life of Christ who came to people to show them what real love is. By the way, the musicians shown in the film are real – a well-known Russian orchestra and a quire who are performing very emotionally. But as it turns out, there’s no place for love in their real life. “Creative people are worthy of respect because they are aimed at culture and spirituality but they can be cruel towards their near and dear and ignore other people’s pain”, the film maker says sadly. The main character is a tough person who is unwilling to compromise and who gives up his son believing that he lives wrongly. And only the death of his son and especially, the note he wrote before his death “Daddy, I love you” sucked out his soul. So we see him going into tears in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. ...