Wings | Chicago Reader

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A lovely and nuanced character study of a once famous World War II fighter pilot named Nadezhda Petrovna (Maya Bulgakova) who becomes a provincial schoolmistress, raising her adopted daughter as a single mother. Larissa Shepitko's 1966 black-and-white feature is stately and reflective in a way that reminds me of some of the late films of John Ford; its commentary on the pervasive effect of Stalinism on postwar Russia is multilayered and provocative. Written by Natalia Ryazantseva and Valentin Yezhov. In Russian with subtitles. 90 min.

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