Three days ago I mentioned the flaws in Ostrov — the parts that didn’t seem put together very well. It’s also possible that they aren’t flaws, that there is a symbolism and profundity that I’m too stupid to notice. Whatever the reason, the Tikhon connection was one that seemed even less well done on the second viewing.
This time I’ll mention a part that was better the second time around. It was the relationship between Father Anatoli and Father Job. Somehow I didn’t catch it all the first time around. Maybe I was looking for the usual movie cliches about stodgy organized religion vs the humble, spiritually-minded maverick, so didn’t expect anything important to come of it. But there is more than that, especially if one follows the references to why Cain killed his brother. The relationship between Father Anatoli and Father Job develops to the end. Neither character quits on the other.
I can’t say that Dmitry Dyuzhev, who plays Father Job, is a good actor. (See 6 second clip above.) Nor can I say that he’s a bad one. The Russian monks with their heavy beards are somewhat limited in what they can do through facial expression, but they can use their eyes. I thought Dyuzhev did well.
It seems that Dyuzhev is no more a long-time actor than Pyotr Mamanov. Instead, he’s a singer. The above clip shows a sample.