The Return (Vozvrashcheniye)
The Return (Vozvrashcheniye) (2003)

In the remote Russian wilderness, two brothers face a range of new, conflicting emotions when their father--a man they only know through a single photograph--resurfaces.

Rated: Unrated
Running Time:
Release Date: October 19, 2004
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Rotten Tomatoes™
Critic Score
95%
Flixster
User Score
93%


Critic Score: 95% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: A suspenseful but perplexing thriller.

Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal

The story, set in contemporary Russia, seems unexceptional at the start. Yet it plays out against a vast wilderness of shorelines and lakes, and turns tantalizing ambiguity into urgent mystery.

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Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader

Beautifully structured and emotionally wrenching.

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Jon Fortgang
Film4

Mysterious, compelling, visually inventive, The Return is a quiet but intense metaphysical-drama of great emotional impact and insight.

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Andrew O'Hehir
Salon.com

The long and eventful fishing trip Dad drags the boys on is simultaneously a very real voyage through the Russian wilderness and also, like, a Jungian trip, man.

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Anthony Lane
New Yorker

Zvyagintsev gets formidable concentration from his youthful actors, and his storytelling moves with the simplicity -- calm, chiselled, and suggestive -- of a fable.

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Jeffrey Overstreet
Looking Closer

Like each episode of Kieslowski's Decalogue, The Return is a small but potent story. It leads us to ask: Is it ever enough to just 'trust and obey'?

Scott Tobias
AV Club

Throughout his expertly controlled film, Zvyagintsev never allows a break in the clouds to provide some reassuring sign that the brothers are on solid footing.

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Deborah Young
Variety

Constructed like an eerie, metaphorical thriller, this tense, riveting character study offers viewers nearly two hours of emotions with a stunning pay-off no one will be expecting.

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Steven D. Greydanus
Decent Films Guide

A harrowing, elusively biblical account… echoes of Abraham and Isaac, the Gospel parables about fathers and pairs of sons, and the Second Coming.

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More reviews for The Return (Vozvrashcheniye)

Flixster Audience Score: 93% Flixster User Reviews
Dan Schultz
A dark, unsettling look at two boys who struggle to come to grips with their father's (Konstantin Lavronenko) sudden return to their family after a 12 year… More
Anthony Lawrie
Andrei Zvyagintsev made a huge leap from TV advertisements to film, this film is a work of art! At times it was like being in a Whistler painting, fantastic!… More
familiar stranger
This family trip moving in a thrilling manner is quiet captivating for what it is, but then somehow I'd got the notion that the genius was going to end it… More
Bruce Bruce
The Return aka: ??????????? . This is a Russian Film sold by Kino International (Check there website). It fits in the category of World Cinema. It is in… More
Aditya Gokhale
Sometimes some seemingly ordinary situations in the lives of common people can serve as premises of highly extraordinary films such as Andrei Zvyagintsev's… More
Luke Baldock
Fantastically shot and all round perfect. A complex and tense relationship is developed between the father and the boys and it builds to a stunning climax. The… More