We Can't Live Without Cosmos


Reviewed by: Jennie Kermode

We Can't Live Without Cosmos
"It's a film that will sneak up on you emotionally and may have you in tears before you realise what's happened."

As Elton John noted, it's lonely out in space. A lot of people assume that means astronauts 9or cosmonauts, in the case of this film) are loners, but in fact there's an intense brotherhood among them. When the Space Shuttle Columbia exploded in 2003, one of its managers at NASA made an eloquent speech about the importance, for humanity's future, of going into space, and about how all of its crew shared that dream. To be a cosmonaut is to take risks for others. The two heroes of this film are more devoted to each other than to anything but the dream of space itself.

If it's possible to talk humbly about sch a big subject, that's what this film does. It's animated in a style that became popular in Russia in the early Seventies, one which will inspire instant nostalgia, in many viewers, for the days when everyone expected the dream to unfold moe rapidly, days when the stars seemed closer than they do today. Though this style is very simple, the characters are well conveyed. It's a film that will sneak up on you emotionally and may have you in tears before you realise what's happened. It's also intelligently put together at the structural level, with little details advancing the plot and filling out the background. Nothing is overstated; we are expected to be capable of doing the work for ourselves.

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Halfway through, the film undergoes a shift, taking on a different kind of challenging territory. Facts become less certain; bigger questions emerge. Still, the focus is on details, and a dry wit keeps the story grounded. Our heroes have been playing a speed chess game together. One clock remains static; the other ticks forward. What we see and what we think we see are relative.

A gentle reflection on the sacrifices of the past and a reminder that we still have everything to play for, We Can't Live Without Cosmos is a film for everybody who still wonders if there's a starman waiting in the sky.

Reviewed on: 03 Feb 2016
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Two cosmonauts do everything together, but can they survive being separated by space?

Director: Konstantin Bronzit

Writer: Konstantin Bronzit

Year: 2014

Runtime: 16 minutes

Country: Russia


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