The Diamond Arm

1969 [RUSSIAN]

Adventure / Comedy / Crime

IMDb Rating 8.3/10 10 16390 16.4K


Top cast

905.52 MB
Russian 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 38 min
Seeds 16

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by I_Ailurophile 9 / 10

Stupendous, absurd comedy

I was prepared for a crime comedy, but not for one with this much madcap energy. 'The diamond arm' is an absolute delight.

This is very much a comedy of errors, enhanced with exaggerated characterizations, physical comedy, and wordplay. Focusing on a bumbling every-man protagonist, and criminals just as bumbling, nosy supporting characters round out the writing of a far-fetched scenario. Add in a couple songs to taste, performed by the actors, and what ensues is a wild farce.

Hand in hand with those songs, the frenetic original music of Aleksandr Zatsepin, upbeat and jaunty, is super and does much to add to the humor and general vigor of the film. Some scenes are edited to be sped up, a bit garishly imparting further merry energy. Even with that in mind, 'The diamond arm' is a fantastically well made movie. The image is sharp and clear, and its high production values don't truly betray its age. Filming locations and set design are wonderful, some with vivid color that's especially eye-catching.

The writing, direction, and production design work in concert to arrange phenomenal scenes. Many individual shots are fetching all on their own, but there is scarcely one moment in the picture that's not rife with detail and liveliness. Everything is carefully crafted to maximize the fun to be had. The cast demonstrate utmost skill in realizing their roles, especially Yuri Nikulin as hapless tourist Semyon Semyonovich Gorbunkov, and Andrei Mironov as Gorbunkov's "friend" and primary point of contact with the criminal syndicate, Gennady Kozodoev. They most of all - but certainly every actor present - embody their parts with great spirit and personality, doing their part to make this as funny and generally captivating as it is.

Subtitles in one's own language are important to understand some key aspects of the plot, and of the comedy. Yet 'The diamond arm' relies much less on dialogue than on its visual presentation and the ecstatic energy it carries, and thus is ever easier to enjoy no matter one's native tongue or point of reference. This is a magnificently entertaining movie, unexpectedly appropriate for all ages and easily enjoyed by a general audience. 'The diamond arm' is well worth seeking out, and I can't recommend it highly enough!

Reviewed by hte-trasme 9 / 10

Better than 'armless

After watching "Brilliantovaya ruka" I can well believe that it's with very good reason that it has such a beloved reputation among Russian language comedies. The vibe it generates it of an extremely high level of breezy fun, and it sustains that with supernatural consistency all the way through.

Combine that with an abundance of simply good jokes drawing from farce, slapstick, and everything in between. The performances are just the right level of broad to pull the maximum number of laughs. The almost constant underscoring perfectly compliments the fact that the pacing is masterfully timed and the fact that all the location filming simply looks fantastic to make this one of the most all-around fun viewing experiences you could imagine.

Moments such as the walking-on-water, the set-up seduction, and the division of the "two parts" are among hilarious moments that also draw in character for their humor and even border somewhat on what might be called "Pythonesque" in style. At the same time, roots in the best of silent comedy, farce, and adventure film are happily evident.

I can easily image how this comedy would reward reviewing, which it evidently for many other commentators here.

Reviewed by sol- 7 / 10

Diamond smuggling and laughing black cats

Mistaken for a professional contrabandist, a bumbling tourist is given an arm cast full of smuggled goods and inadvertently becomes a government spy after going to the police in this energetic Soviet comedy. Once voted as the funniest Russian comedy of time, 'The Diamond Arm' certainly does an impressive job incorporating various forms of humour. The first five minutes, for example, play out as a dialogue-free silent comedy, but later on there are also pratfalls, sight gags and lines that crack with wit. At its zaniest, the chief smuggler has a red tinted dream in which he is tormented by a laughing black cat (!), though the most amusing moments come from characters narrating their thoughts out loud, whether it be the protagonist's paranoia over a taxi ride or his wife's concern that he is cheating on her. Less successful are the film's attempts at satire - or perhaps this angle is just lost on a western viewer. By some accounts, the film offers a sharp and biting parody of life under the Soviet regime, but ostensibly, it is just an offbeat motion picture about things going incredibly wrong. Yuriy Nikulin (reportedly a former circus clown) does okay as a man out of his depth, wearing the much sought-after cast, but the best moments are had by Andrey Mironov as the actual contrabandist who was meant to be given the cast. Whether it be repeatedly failing to knock Nikulin unconscious during a fishing trip, being kicked in the mouth during a drunken dance or fondling the precious cast, Mironov is simply sensational in a rather thankless role.

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