A Room and a Half or a Sentimental Journey Back Home

A Room and a Half or a Sentimental Journey Back Home

Andrey Khrzhanovsky (2009)

12A Certificate


Our Score
Poet and nobel laureate Joseph Brodsky was exiled from the Soviet Union in 1972 and never returned, dying in his New York apartment in 1996. However, film-maker Andrey Khrzhanovsky uses an imagined homecoming to spark memories of the poet's youth in this highly stylised and impeccably judged biopic. Played in ascending age by Evgeniy Ogandzhanyan, Artem Smola and Grigoriy Dityatkovskiy, Brodsky finds wonderment in everything and Khrzhanovsky juxtaposes extracts from his verses with animated interludes to convey the writer's questing mind. He also captures the fascination and frustration of living in a cramped Leningrad (now St Petersburg) apartment with parents Sergei Yursky and Alisa Freyndlikh, Other sequences involving floating musical instruments, a stolen book of nude paintings and a string of failed seductions are amusing, while the telephone sing-song and posthumous last supper are deeply poignant. This is a beautifully produced, historically astute and hugely affecting film.


Biopic of Nobel Prize-winning Russian poet Joseph Brodsky, examining his idyllic childhood and education, and how a growing awareness of the repression of the Soviet regime forced him into exile. The events of his life are framed with a fictional story, in which the older Brodsky returns to his childhood home in disguise. Starring Grigoriy Dityatkovskiy and Artem Smola. In Russian.

Cast & Crew

Joseph Brodsky Grigoriy Dityatkovskiy
Mother Alisa Freyndlikh
Father Sergei Yursky
Young Brodsky Artem Smola
Brodsky in childhood Evgeniy Ogandzhanyan
Director Andrey Khrzhanovsky
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Other Information

Language: Russian +subtitlesColourTheatrical distributor: Yume PicturesGuidance: Swearing.Available on: DVDReleased on: 7 May 2010