Alexandra is a slow moving Russian film about a grandmother (Galina Vishnevskaya) who travels to visit her grandson, posted in Chechnya. Denis, an officer in the Russian army, has been engaged in fighting for the past seven years. Through the old woman's wise and discerning eyes, the film illustrates the youth, loneliness and futility of war. Young boys become men, in masculine, dirty and violent environments devoid of love or comfort. At one point, Alexandra leaves the stifling heat of the barracks to visit a local market and befriends some Chechynian women. A woman called Malika invites Alexandra to her house to rest. She states that whilst men can be enemies, women when they meet are immediately like sisters. The two women become friends in the short period.
The film is touching and the barren landscape is strangely beautiful. Highly recommended.