Barking Boxshot
USA, 2021
Length / The Village Detective: 81 minutes
Length / Special features: 112 minutes
Sound: 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio /
2.0 Stereo LPCM (48khz/16-bit)
Colour / Black and white
Original aspect ratio: 1.78:1
Language: English, Russian
Subtitles: English

Blu-Ray BD50 / 1080p / 24fps / Region ABC
RRP: £19.99

Release Date: 26 February 2024
SRBD 076


In 2016 a fishing boat off the Icelandic coast hauled up four reels of Derevensky detektiv ('The Village Detective'), a Soviet-era film starring the well-known Russian actor Mikhail Zharov. The discovery led filmmaker Bill Morrison (Dawson City: Frozen Time) on a fascinating cinematic odyssey.

The decayed footage is woven together with clips from Zharov’s lengthy filmography, and an entrancing score by David Lang, to tell the story of its star - and of Soviet cinema itself.
Morrison creates a unique and mesmerising document, reflecting how life, history, and art intersect and endure forever on film.

Presented from the new director-approved 4K transfer, our region-free Blu-ray features an exclusive, newly filmed interview with filmmaker Bill Morrison, a selection of his earlier short film works including Beyond Zero: 1914-1918 (2014) and The Unchanging Sea (2018), plus a booklet with new writing by film historian Peter Walsh.    

more about the film

Blonde Stills

Special Features

• The Village Detective: A Song Cycle (2021) presented from a 4K master, supervised and approved by director Bill Morrison.

• An exclusive, newly filmed interview with Bill Morrison.

• Bill Morrison’s short films:
- Beyond Zero: 1914-1918 (2014, 41 mins)
- The Unchanging Sea (2018, 30 mins)
- Sunken Films (2020, 11 minutes)
- Let Me Come In (2021, 11 minutes)

• Trailer

• Booklet with a new essay on the film by writer and film historian Peter Walsh.

• Region free Blu-ray (A/B/C).

• UK premiere release on Blu-ray.

Related Titles

Directed, Produced and Edited by Bill Morrison

Produced by Maria Vinogradova, Madeleine Molyneaux
Music - David Lang
Sound Design - Bill Morrison, John Somers
Underwater videography - Chuck Wade

Main Cast
Mikhail Zharov


Related Titles

Bill Morrison's acclaimed film Dawson City: Frozen Time
and many other gems of international documentary
cinema are also available on Second Run

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2021 Telluride Film Festival / Official Selection
2021 Moscow International Film Festival / Official Selection
2021 International Film Festival Rotterdam / Official Selection
2021 Melbourne International Film Festival / Official Selection
2021 New Horizons Film Festival Wrocław / Official Selection

“Critic's Pick! Bill Morrison, the poet laureate of lost films, turns the story of footage found near Iceland into a history of a slice of Soviet cinema.” Glenn Kenny, The New York Times

"The enthralling beauty of motion-picture decay once more draws Morrison’s eyes. [...] like all consequential art, Morrison’s films change how we see; they unfreeze time."
Seth Fein, Los Angeles Review of Books

“A biographical documentary that only Morrison could deliver. With a fantastic score by David Lang, the director mesmerizingly weaves through an entire life of unbridled creativity while also, once again, instilling the importance of film preservation.” Jordan Raup, The Film Stage

“Morrison’s movies feel like half-remembered reveries formed from memories you can no longer consciously recall. Hovering at the intersection of reappropriation, preservation, history, music, and art, any one of his works will haunt you for the rest of your life.” Dan Schindel, Hyperallergic

“The poetics of decomposition are the haunting, thrilling and... historically revelatory stuff of the cinema of Bill Morrison.” Scott Macauley, Filmmaker Magazine

“A celebration of cinema that reflects life and art and its resilience to the test of time, both metaphorically and physically.” Dustin Chang, Screen Anarchy

“In merging these rescued images with beautiful, cerebral music, a new piece of art is built atop the old, offering both a celebration of what’s been found and what is still to come.” Dan Mecca, The Film Stage

“An enthralling and unlikely work of non-fiction. One which highlights the value of even the strangest flotsam.”
Rob Aldam, Backseat Mafia

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