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Old 02-17-2006, 02:57 PM   #31
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Now these are my favourites and they are avaible on amazon , mmm , i tried not to pick all that traditional BS they give you in tourist shop , this is basically it ( True - love - tears - nerves - fun - irony) , if possible try to watch with russian sound and english subs
don't hesitate with questions


Sci- fi :

Stalker ( by Andrey Tarkovsky , one of his best , based on a novel)

Solaris ( also by andrei takovsky )

Professor Dowell's Testament

Dramas

Burnt By The Sun ( best export by Nikita Michalkov , drama of real people , best work by Oleg Menchikov )

The Cold Summer of 1953 ( true story , great actors , the first "real " film made in 1987 , Truth and nothing but )


True Life / inner circle / humor / philosophy

White Sun Of The Desert ( Alternative russian western ala Sergio Leone , fantastic stuff )

Cuckoo ( now , this one is a bit weird , set during WWII , very good and new )

At Home Among Strangers , A Stranger among its own ( yet another movie set close to sergio leones genre ( in a good way ) , directed by Nikita Mihalkov , one of his first and better movies , fantastic supporting cast )

Autumn Marathon ( film about true soviet life in St Petersburg , funny , cruel , the rain is falling , yellow leaves everywhere , done by Georgy Danelia , great cast , great storyline )

slave Of Love ( another one by Nikita Mihalkov , a love russian hollywood story during civil war , no tough stuff , more philosophy )

Moscow Does Not Believe In Tears ( this one is alright , a bit official , but still a nice story and beautiful russian romance )

comedies

Ivan Vasilievich - Back To The Future ( ivan The Terrible goes nuts )

Operation " Y" and other shurik adventures ( *****)

Gentlemen Of Fortune ( great cast , laughs on crime )

Peculiarities of the National Hunting ( Russia Of The 90's , vodka rules )

Classic

Unfinished Piece For The Player Piano ( based On A.Chekhov - directed by Nikita Mihalkov , great cast , nice views )

A Cruel Romance ( based on love story by author i can't remember , great director Eldar Ryazaonov , awesome cast , all about 19th century Russia )

Oblomov ( based on " A Few Days from the life of I.I. Oblomov " by I. Goncharov , directed by Nikita Mihalkov , awesome cast , very dreamy , close to meditation , inner face of countryside )

thanks.

i've seen a couple of those (i've nearly lost track of how many times professors have shown moscow doesn't believe in tears in classes. i'll be good with never seeing that again. i've seen it dubbed into english, in russian with english subtitles more than once, in russian with russian subtitles, and without any subtitles at all).

i thought cuckoo was very good.
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Old 02-17-2006, 03:06 PM   #32
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I couldn't learn Russian to save my life. The alphabet, the vocabulary and the grammar would all kill me. Considering that grammar got me in the much easier language of French..................
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Old 02-17-2006, 03:11 PM   #33
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Originally posted by verte76
I couldn't learn Russian to save my life. The alphabet, the vocabulary and the grammar would all kill me. Considering that grammar got me in the much easier language of French..................

russian grammar is a lot easier than french. and the alphabet is essentially phonetic. your teacher/self-teaching tool probably just sucked.
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Old 02-17-2006, 03:29 PM   #34
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Originally posted by verte76
I couldn't learn Russian to save my life. The alphabet, the vocabulary and the grammar would all kill me. Considering that grammar got me in the much easier language of French..................
I took a semester of Russian and a year of Japanese.

Once you get past the alphabet, the rest is somewhat easier than English.
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Old 02-17-2006, 03:50 PM   #35
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I've heard horror stories about how tough Russian is, but French pronunciation is so tricky and I kept getting nuked on those damn dictees. The alphabet is something I'd have to get used to.
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Old 02-17-2006, 05:43 PM   #36
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The Cyrillic alphabet is a big hurdle.
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Old 02-17-2006, 06:16 PM   #37
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Yeah, the Cyrillic alphabet would be a challenge.
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Old 02-17-2006, 07:21 PM   #38
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Originally posted by A_Wanderer
I have to say that pinning the grammar is the most important part to learning a language, just speaking english we don't think about it but when doing a foreign language it is important.
I've found exactly the same--even in French, probably the foreign language I read, speak and understand best (short of Hebrew, which I can't really speak) I still struggle mightily with subjunctive tense and some other aspects. My spoken Hindi and Tamil are grammatically pathetic, though I can read and understand both with passable competence. I grew up with two languages spoken at home (at least by my parents), and that does help a bit in terms of not always having to switch back to an imaginary English template where orienting myself grammatically is concerned.

But it's obvious from your posts that you are a voracious reader, and that helps tremendously to overcome poor grammar education too. Sometimes "just knowing" what the right construction in English would be, even if you can't quite articulate why, enables you to recognize what would be right elsewhere. And reading really helps a lot with that (with the caveat that the nonfiction you probably prefer often reflects a lower grammatical standard than literary-caliber fiction does).
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Old 02-17-2006, 08:51 PM   #39
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Pretty much right on those fronts, I really have to say that the Pimsleur method helped me infinitely, it does it all phonetically with repetition of sentence constructions which helps pronunciation and comprehending the grammar intuitively - doing it in conjunction with a book course seems to work.

As far as the alphabet goes that is where Greek payed off a lot, once you get past the different letters and learn how to gratuitously roll ones tongue you don't have to worry to much.

Parrrruskie
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Old 02-17-2006, 09:55 PM   #40
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Originally posted by IWasBored



russian grammar is a lot easier than french. and the alphabet is essentially phonetic.
I totally disagree.

The alphabet is phonetic, but that has nothing to do with grammar - only makes the reading easier. The grammar itself is considerably more difficult due to their case conjugations of everything from nouns, to adjectives to adverbs.

For an anglophone, French is considerably easier to learn than Russian. It also has much easier pronunciation - you can immediately recognize a Slavic person because they are able to pick up each others's languages with very minor accents, sometimes indistinguishable at all. An anglophone will stick out in very obvious ways in any of the Slavic languages.
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Old 02-18-2006, 08:49 AM   #41
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Originally posted by verte76
I've heard horror stories about how tough Russian is, but French pronunciation is so tricky and I kept getting nuked on those damn dictees. The alphabet is something I'd have to get used to.
really? I'm taking it (french) and the pronunciation is so much easier than english. For the most part, it doesn't change.

I'd like to learn Russian...a lot of my family is from Russia (well, it was Russia when they left). But when I try to research the towns they were from, all I get are ads for mail order brides.
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Old 02-18-2006, 11:06 AM   #42
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I hated those dictees in French. They started to really kill my grades when I was taking French in college. It was my minor, then my grades went sour and I changed my minor to philosophy.
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Old 02-18-2006, 04:31 PM   #43
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Originally posted by anitram


I totally disagree.

The alphabet is phonetic, but that has nothing to do with grammar - only makes the reading easier. The grammar itself is considerably more difficult due to their case conjugations of everything from nouns, to adjectives to adverbs.

For an anglophone, French is considerably easier to learn than Russian. It also has much easier pronunciation - you can immediately recognize a Slavic person because they are able to pick up each others's languages with very minor accents, sometimes indistinguishable at all. An anglophone will stick out in very obvious ways in any of the Slavic languages.
i know the alphabet has nothing to do with grammar. but the fact that it's phonetic is why i think it's less of a big hurdle than nbc, verte, and others make it out to be.

accents aren't grammar, either. it is my understanding that the sounds in slavic languages are similar, and that would give a russian an edge over an american while learning to speak polish as far as pronunciation goes. there are french sounds that are so dramatically different from english sounds that even if the anglophone has an easier time learning sentence structure and verb conjugations than they would in russian, it's going to be just as difficult to say certain sounds. this then becomes a linguistics debate.

the thing about the cases in russian is that they, for the most part (i know there are exceptions), have rather uniform endings. you remember a few endings, know where you need to use them, and suddenly word order is a whole lot freer than it is in english. that can hinder sometimes more than help, but because most of the time the words have pretty clear, identifiable endings, you can usually tell what kinds of words they are, and where they go in your translation. gendered nouns are generally identifiable. i never studied french for a significant amount of time, but i've been told that there nothing in the word itself that indicates that cabbage is feminine and dog is male. whereas with both of those words in russian, you see an "a" on the end and know what endings you need to use if you want to say "i'm eating cabbage" or "antiram's dog."
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Old 02-18-2006, 07:00 PM   #44
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How many cases does Russian have, eleven? I'd hate to try to decline a noun in Russian. The whole case thing is why I never really learned Latin, even though I studied it. And that was with five major cases and two minor ones. I really don't have any trouble remembering French irregular verbs. It's the future tenses that got me in trouble in French.
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Old 02-18-2006, 07:06 PM   #45
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I can't remember if Russian has 6 or 7. The other 2 Slavic languages I speak have 7, so I'm not sure if I'm mixing them up.

IWB, yes, in French it's more difficult to tell if a noun is feminine or masculine. There are some helpful hints - the vast majority of words that end in 'e' are feminine, for example. But this is not really that much of a big deal in spoken French because for example, "She went" translates to "Elle est allée" while "He went" translates to "Il est allé" - you can't tell the difference in spoken language in the verb's ending anyhow because you're just tacking on an E. So even if you make a mistake in conjugating say an adjective (green: vert vs. verte) because you are not sure what the gender of the noun is, it's not that recognizable as it is in Russian.
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