An ordinary Roma student becomes a vampire Rama II, one of those who actually controls everything. Although, come to think of it, vampires aren’t too much like world masters. They are only bearers of higher parasitic beings – Languages - who have their own minds, far superior to human ones.
The film was to be released today. But it will not work – the picture has not received a rental certificate, according to rumors – because of Oxymiron’s position on the military operation in Ukraine. It is unclear whether viewers will be able to see “Empire V”, and if so, when and where. However, our author was lucky to see the film on preview – and… it was worth it!
Genre: urban fantasy
Director: Victor Ginzburg
Cast: Pavel Tabakov, Taisiya Radchenko, Miron Fedorov (Oxxxymiron)
Premiere: this is the main intrigue!
Age rating: 18+
It looks like: Generation P (2011) * “Warriors of the World” (2009)
Pelevin’s novel “Empire V”, in my opinion, is not well suited for filming. The book has a lot of extensive reasoning, weakly related to the reality of concepts and little action. In essence, this is a novel about learning: imagine “Harry Potter”, from which all the adventures were thrown out, devoting most of the book to retelling the Hogwarts program for the 6th year. And here on such material you need to make a two-hour film. But Victor Ginzburg, who previously filmed “Generation P”, managed.
Work on improving the material went in three directions. First, of course, most of the speculation about glamor and discourse has fallen under the knife – these are the two key subjects that are taught to a young vampire. Secondly, wherever possible and where not possible, powerful visual effects were inserted, which well disguised the eventful outline of history. Well, in the third, we picked up such actors who just need to be in the frame, and everything is no longer boring.
Pavel Tabakov (Rama), Miron Fedorov (Mitra, mentor of young vampires) and Bronislav Vinogrodsky (Loki, teacher of love and martial arts) are dragging the whole film. It is Tabakov’s acting skills, but both Oxymiron and Vinogrodsky are colorful enough to strike out with pure charisma. The movie is worth watching first of all in order to see this trinity. Actors who flash less often also fit well into what is happening. Verzhbitsky in the role of one of the main vampires evokes associations with the “Watchmen”, Taisiya Radchenko did well in the role of a closed, strange, but at the same time bright millennial, and Igor Zhizhikin, who usually plays all sorts of security officers or vicious Mordovians, incredibly funny as a teacher-theorist .
By the way, the whole film I caught myself wanting to see Pavel Tabakov in the role of Peter Parker – he moves well, and gets into the character, and looks quite young. Yes, and stylists, creating hairstyles and costumes of the hero, it seems, drew inspiration from the image of Toby Maguire. Roma-Rama on the screen is rapidly passing the path from the empty place to the prince of this world. Only in contrast to Vavilen Tatarsky from “Generation P” (by the way, it will be shown in a flash in “Empire”), which due to numerous talents jerked forward on the career ladder, Rama is most of the film is in a state of “thinks cool”, but in fact, no one is still there. ” And his personal transitions are perfectly reflected not only in acting, but also in appearance. So, by the way, it was in the book, but the movie allowed this concept to unfold in all its glory.
At the premiere, we were told that Ginzburg undertook to film “Empire V” because “it explains who is behind it all” – this is about real power in the world shown in “Generation P”. But, in my opinion, nothing is explained here. Not only is Rama an unreliable narrator who is not really told anything (and who corrects the inaccuracies in “Empire V” for a long time in “Batman Apollo”), but also the vampires themselves on closer examination are not masters of life, but at best intermediate carriers.
They obey — traditions, their Mouse Goddess, and their own magical Languages — and receive only the pitiful crumbs of the resource wealth that humanity produces. This is not about blood, which vampires use only in drops to learn the thoughts and feelings of the interlocutor, and which is called politically correct euphemisms like “red liquid”, and not even about natural resources. It is about the mysterious substance “bablos”, which is produced by the human mind. Yes, through the Chaldeans, vampires manipulate the consciousness of the human masses, but vaguely imagine why. And they certainly do not understand who ultimately gets the main profit from their management activities.
Pelevin’s true power – that in “Generation P”, that in “Empire V”, that in his direct sequel “Batman Apollo” – is transcendent. All parts of the food chain are working properly, they think a lot about themselves and understand little about what is really happening in the world. And what kind of thing is this – the world. Only the book and film “Generation P” were much closer and clearer to you and me, because they told about the lower caste of rulers (the secret society of the Chaldeans). The abundance of humor based on native cultural code and familiar advertising slogans from childhood, the understandable hero Babylon with problems close to us and a whole scattering of luxurious postmodern ideas like the non-existent president, created with the help of computer graphics – all made the book and the film cult folk.
“Empire V” from the people far away. There are many fewer jokes and phrases that you want to quote right and left; there are far fewer adventures of body and spirit that are interesting to watch. Finally, Rama, for all his humanity, is still just a lucky man who received a golden pass to the world of higher elites. He is a bloodsucker, the hatred of each of which the ordinary Russian proletarian soaked up with mother’s milk. And it is difficult to empathize with this hero. And all the really interesting concepts and exciting adventures await us only in the next book, “Batman Apollo”. Without the film adaptation of the sequel “Empire V” will remain half the story, and half boring.
But “Empire” has its own additional semantic plan. Fyodorov was clearly taken not only because he looks like a villain-intellectual: the final fight of the film is a poetic battle, and the presence of Oxymiron in the frame definitely adds points to it. Poems for this fight were written by new ones, and the poet Andrei Orlov (Orlusha) was responsible for the texts (the most powerful!) (If I understood correctly from the final titles). And the crematorium building plays the role of the mansion under which the Great Mouse is located. The film is generally filled with all sorts of visual Easter eggs, which the modern viewer loves to look for. And he has to decide for himself why they are made – for fun or to create a double bottom.
Ginzburg again shot a film adaptation of Pelevin, which is nice to watch – only this time not thanks, but contrary to the original source. The director figured out how to turn the sluggish philosophical story of the hero’s formation into something spectacular, memorable and cute. And if he was able to make a solid film on such a complex material, then “Batman Apollo”, if he manages to shoot, has every chance to become the main domestic film of the decade.