My new favorite Soviet 80’s film is ASSA / ACCA. Set in the 1980’s, the empty resort town of Yalta is the backdrop for a tragic wintertime love story of a girl who has to choose between her mafioso older boyfriend and a young musician she meets by accident one night…
The film came out in 1987 and became a cult classic and a symbol of freedom and change for Russian youth. A contributor to the Russian rock movement director Sergei Solovyov brought underground artists and musicians to light by using them and their music in his films. ASSA was the first Soviet film to use underground Russian rock. Performance and installation artist Afrika (Sergei Bugaev) starred as Bananan, the rebellious singer who steals Alika’s heart and his bandmates were played by Victor Tsoi and his real life band Kino. The film also featured songs by Aquarium, Bravo, Soyuz kompozitorov, Yury Chernavsky with Vesyolye Rebyata and other Russian bands of the day.
A complementing mix of dreamy instrumentals, folk and hard rock, the soundtrack supports the beautiful imagery which seems to flow endlessly from frame to frame. Add to that impeccable style and art direction and this movie is worth seeing even if you don’t speak Russian (but the English subtitles help!).
A great indepth review here