Only a handful of Soviet films have achieved cult classic status among the younger generation in Russia today. One such film is ASSA (1987), which has come to define the vitality and excitement in the years before the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Directed by Sergei Solovyov for state-run Mosfilm studio, ASSA was shot entirely in the Crimean resort of Yalta, in a period of relative peace for the disputed peninsula. Set in the winter of 1980, at the height of Leonid Brezhnev’s era of stagnation, ASSA encapsulates a clash between the old and the new, epitomised respectively by Krymov, the domineering head of a criminal group who is having an affair with his much younger nurse Alika, and Bananan, a free-spirited underground rock musician.

By: Ghost