Come and See (1985)

come and see poster 1985 movie
8.5 Overall Score
Story: 8/10
Acting: 8/10
Visuals: 10/10

Brutal

Though good, hard to watch

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Come and See

Studio:  Belarusfilm/Mosfilm

Genre(s):  War/Drama

Release Date(s):  July 9, 1985 (Moscow Film Festival)/September 3, 1985 (Venice Film Festival)/February 6, 1987 (US)

MPAA Rating:  Not Rated

come and see flyora kids find gun

A gun!!! Our luck is turning around!

Flyora (Aleksei Kravchenko) has discovered a gun on the battlefield, and he finds himself recruited to fight the Nazis as they attempt to take over territory in Belarus.  When he is separated from the military, he finds himself on an adventure across the battlefields and behind enemy lines as he finds his grip on reality fading as he faces the horrors of war.

Directed by Elem Kimov (who also penned the screenplay with Ales Adamovich), Come and See (Иди и смотри or Idzi i hliadzi) is a Russian World War II movie.  The film was released to positive reviews and has often made “Best Of” lists.  The Criterion Collection released a remastered version of the film (Criterion #1035).

I hadn’t heard much of Come and See but then it felt like I saw it a lot of places.  With recommendations, I decided to watch Come and See.  It is an experience, but one of those experiences you find sticking with you…like it or not.

come and see peat bog swamp flyora aleksei kravchenko

I’m just sad because I realized there was a bridge about 500 ft away

The movie is brutal.  In a lot of war movies (or even a horror movie), the despair and action eventually lets up…this is not true to Come and Play.  After an opening that is somewhat calm, the movie then begins a path demonstrating the horrors of war…over and over again.  Flyora keeps experiencing one awful experience after the other and the film takes no prisoners (literally).

Aleksei Kravchenko s an odd lead.  He is kind of a bit of an indistinguishable age in that he often looks like a kid with big doe eyes, but other times he looks like a young adult playing war.  His character doesn’t have much dialogue as he wanders around shellshocked from all that he has experienced and all that he has survived.  He generally looks like he’s been broken by the horror, and those eyes look dead as much as they are wide.

come and see flyora aleksei kravchenko nazis gun

Remember: No one is making you watch this movie

The movie is very visual.  It is shot in a smaller frame of film which seems to focus your eyes opposed to a big, wide-screened war epic.  The darkness and cruelty of war seems to fill the whole screen.  It is bloody and violent.  Though it is a war film, the movie almost crosses over into horror in its portrayal.

Come and See is a memorable film.  It is loaded with one atrocity after another as the anti-war theme plays out like a more modern version of The Red Badge of Courage in some ways.  With a theme that argues that every shot taken in war cannot be taken back and every attempt to do it just fails, the movie hits hard…if you and Flyora can endure it.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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