Year: 1966
UK: ICA Projects
Cast: Anatoli Solonitsyn, Ivan Lapikov, Nikolai Grinko, Nikolai Sergeyev, Irma Raush, Nikolai Burlyayev, Yuri Nikulin, Rolan Bykov, Nikolai Grabbe, Mikhail Kononov, Stepan Krylov, Irina Miroshnichenko, Bolot Bejshenaliyev
Director: Andrei Tarkovsky
Country: Russia
Language: Russian (English subtitles)
UK: 189 mins
UK Certificate: 15 contains moderate violence
UK Release Date: 2 July 2004 (Limited Release)


Andrei Tarkovsky's monumental second feature was suppressed when it first appeared in 1966, although its prize-winning appearance at the 1969 Cannes Film Festival helped to secure both film and filmmaker's international reputations. This account of the life of 15th century icon painter Andrei Rublev (c. 1360 - 1430) is more a chronicle of medieval Russian life than a conventional biopic, following the artist across a physical landscape ravaged by the Tatar invasions and a spiritual terrain marked by self-doubt and temptation. Rublev's search for inner-peace is rendered in harsh yet sublime style by Tarkovsky, who called this 'a film of the earth'; its elemental power - both visceral and cerebral - is impossible to deny, holding the viewer rapt from its mysterious, awe-inspiring opening to the beautiful, blazing colour of the epilogue. Having existed in various forms over the years, this 189-minute version is the cut that was endorsed by the director himself.