Like most places in the world, Russia’s silver screens are dominated by Hollywood’s global blockbusters. Russia’s film industry has struggled with the financial crisis, but is also capable of producing films that can occasionally compete locally with the American machine. Once a month, SRAS provides a lineup of the top five movies in Russia by box office take—with the official Russian-language trailers from YouTube and, for those Russian films on the list, links to our Russian film site.
Below are films listed with their English and Russian titles (note that they differ sometimes), as well as how much the film has earned over the calendar month.
1. Обитель зла: Возмездие—Resident Evil: Retribution—$15.8m
Milla Jovovich (who speaks Russian, by the way) is back with her merry band of mutant zombies. Note that “обитель зла” actually translates more closely as “Residence of Evil.” “Обитель” also has religious overtones, so perhaps we could even say “Cloister of Evil.” Muah-ha-ha. “Возмездие” is a pretty straightforward translation of “retribution.”
PS—the last Resident Evil (released back in September 2010) also went straight to the top of the charts in Russia.
2. Эволюция Борна—The Bourne Legacy—$7.2m
While a more direct translation would have this as “Наследство Борна,” the Russian distributors have chosen to use a perhaps more dynamic name: Bourne’s Evolution.
3. Петля времени—The Looper—$5m
Here, the Russian translation is a bit more exact than the English. The Russian actually translates to A Loop in Time.
“Петля” can also refer to a buttonhole or a hinge.
4. Особо опасны—Savages—$3.8m
While a direct translation would have this film titled something like “Дикие,” this film’s Russian distributors have elected to call it “Особо опасны,” or Especially Dangerous, which does capture the general idea of the original while also perhaps leeching some brand recognition from the Angelina Jolie movie Wanted, which was released in Russia under the name Особо опасен.
5. Москва 2017—Branded—$3.8m
Known as “Branded” for its American release (downplaying the Russian connection), this Russian-American science fiction film written and directed by Jamie Bradshaw and Aleksandr Dulerayn is known as Москва 2017, playing up the Russian connection. This film was released by Roadside Attractions, the same company that released an already well-known film on consumerism, Super Size Me.