COME AND SEE (1985) , THE BEST WAR MOVIE EVER


"This 1985 film from Russia is one of the most devastating films ever about anything, and in it, the survivors must envy the dead."

Elem Kilmov’s 1985 Soviet anti-war drama Come and See , adopted  from the 1978 book "I am from the Fiery Village", opens with teenage boy Flyora (Aleksey Kravchenko) digging  a discarded gun out of a sandy trench with the intention of joining the Soviet partisans in Nazi occupied Byelorussia  . 
The film's title comes from Chapter 6 of The Apocalypse of John, in which "Come and see" is  an invitation to look upon the destruction caused by the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse and that is exactly what we are  going to witness throughout  this film and Flyora's  journey.


This  journey that is senses-shattering  depiction of loss of innocence, man's sadistic cruel nature and  dehumanizing horrors and brutality of war will be ending in inevitable destruction of this young man's soul and indeed survivors may envy the dead.
The lead performance of 13-year-old Alexei Kravchenko is a good part of what makes this film great (There are stories out there that much of his performance was done under the influence of hypnosis).
Nearly blocked from being made by Soviet censors, who took seven years to approve its script, Come and See is  the best  antiwar film ever made.


Is it true that audiences demand some kind of release or catharsis? That we cannot accept a film that leaves us with no hope? That we struggle to find uplift in the mire of malevolence? There's a curious scene here in a wood, the sun falling down through the leaves, when the soundtrack, which has been grim and mournful, suddenly breaks free into Mozart. And what does this signify? A fantasy, I believe, and not Florya's, who has probably never heard such music. The Mozart descends into the film like a deus ex machina, to lift us from its despair. We can accept it if we want, but it changes nothing. It is like an ironic taunt. 
Roger Ebert