Small adventures, yes. But in the context in which they have been arranged by Grigori Chukhrai, who directed and helped to write the script, they become the moving episodes, the stanzas, in a profound and cumulative lament for the disorder, the grief and the frustration of people borne down upon by war. They become the heart-rending dilemmas and the strength-testing challenges set one upon the other in a ballad that states the cruelties of a monstrous agony.It is also available in the Criterion Collection, which has spurred more reviews.
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