The Pokrovsky Gate
Students Day in Russia

Moscow Does Not Believe in Tears

Москва слезам не верит” (Moscow does not believe in tears) won an Academy award for the Best Foreign Language Film in 1980. It was directed by Vladimir Menshov and produced by Mosfilm.

The plot

Сюжет достаточно незатейлив: три подруги из провинции в конце 50-х годов приезжают «покорять» Москву (the plot is fairly simple: three young girls from the province come “to conquer” Moscow in the late 1950s). They are friends and their destinies go in accordance with the nature of each. The shy and modest Antonina works as a house painter, marries a Moscow workman, raises her children, takes care of the dacha, she is loved and loves.

Модная и самоуверенная Людмила надеется получить всё и сразу, как в лотерее (the fashionable and self-confident Ludmila wants everything at once, like in the lottery). She marries a rich and famous hockey player from Moscow who can withstand the burden of fame and ruins himself with alcohol, leaving Ludmila with nothing. But she doesn’t lose hope.

And the main character Ekatarina who, in company of Ludmila pretended to be the daughter of a wealthy professor. She unfortunately becomes pregnant of her lover, but when he later finds out about her lie, he refuses to help her or even to keep in touch with her. She nevertheless manages to pass her degree at the Institute, to raise her daughter, to become the director of a factory … and, of course, to find love in the person of Ghosha, a very skilful metalworker. But afraid of loosing him, she lies about herself, telling him that she is a simple worker and not the director of the factory.

The leitmotif through the entire movie is the song of Tatiana and Sergey Nikitin (famous Russian bards):

“Не сразу всё устроилось, Москва не сразу строилась. Слезам Москва не верила, А верила любви…”

Everything was not built at once, Moscow was not built at once. Moscow did not believe in tears, But believed in love…

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В 1985 году перед первой встречей с Михаилом Горбачёвым президент США Рональд Рейган посмотрел этот фильм 8 раз, пытаясь постичь “загадочную русскую душу”. (In 1985, before his first meeting with Mikhail Gorbachev, President Ronald Reagan watched this movie 8 times, trying to understand the “mysterious Russian soul”).

Елена Коновалова