BloodyFootSex’s review published on Letterboxd:
God, what a depressing, dark, and douer piece of Russian cinema.
From the soldiers who seem to never recover to nurses having serious mental and psychical issues from a long, taxing war, to the people and city, which seem eroded, tired, and weak. Even the color palate is puke green.
Everyone is tired. There is very little hope, even from the most hopeful. That feeling of hopelessness wears on every person, as they try to find meaning in the meaningless city they now inhabit.
Even know the first half is a better mix of the horrors of war with the Phantom Thread Esque narrative that begins to unfold, and honestly a 5 star masterpiece, the second half focuses almost entirely on the main narrative, which at times got tiring, along with the fact I was so interested in so many things that are set up, but mostly abandoned.
But man did this film both feel like it would never end AND hit me in the gut as hard as it did!