It is 1942, and the western edge of the USSR is under German occupation. In the region, local partisans are waging a brutal battle against their foreign enemies. Sushenya, an innocent rail worker, is arrested with a band of saboteurs when a train is derailed not far from his village. The German officer decides to set him free rather than hang him with the others, but rumors of Sushenya's treason spread quickly, and partisans Burov and Voitik seek revenge. Captured by the partisans, Sushenya is led through the forest, where they are ambushed. Soon he finds himself one-on-one with his wounded enemy, forced to make a moral choice under immoral circumstances.
Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes
The world and its choices are often cruel, but for all the devastations visited on the characters, Mr. Loznitsa is searching for the human good amid a human catastrophe.Manohla Dargis, New York Times, 06.13.2013
Sergei Loznitsa's sophomore feature is a more conventional work than his audacious debut, My Joy, but no less accomplished in its craft, especially thanks to sterling work by ace Romanian lenser Oleg Mutu.Leslie Felperin, Variety, 06.10.2013
Intimate in the telling, sweeping in the implications, Loznitsa has created an unusually incisive film.Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times, 07.11.2013
A ponderous trudge at times, it is ultimately worth the journey.Stephen Dalton, Hollywood Reporter, 05.25.2012