Despite the Falling Snow (film)

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Despite the Falling Snow
Despite the Falling Snow.png
Directed by Shamim Sarif
Screenplay byShamim Sarif
Based on Despite the Falling Snow
by Shamim Sarif
Produced by Hanan Kattan
CinematographyDavid Johnson
Edited by Masahiro Hirakubo
Music by Rachel Portman
Distributed by Altitude Film Distribution
Release date
  • 15 April 2016 (2016-04-15)
Running time
93 minutes
CountriesUK, Canada

Despite the Falling Snow is a 2016 British Cold War espionage film directed by Shamim Sarif, adapted from her novel of the same name. [1] Starring Rebecca Ferguson, Sam Reid, Charles Dance, Antje Traue, Oliver Jackson-Cohen, Thure Lindhardt and Anthony Head, [2] the film was released in the United Kingdom on 15 April 2016.



The film is set in the post-Stalinist Soviet Union. A young Soviet woman, Katya, lost her parents during the Stalinist repressions. Though she pretends to be a communist, she hates the regime and spies for the Americans. Her friend Misha, who is a spy, also helps her obtain important information for the Americans. As part of her next assignment, she meets the young and good-looking Sasha, who belongs to the Kremlin elite. In order to spy on him, Katya ends up marrying Sasha but not everything is going to the plan. Katya soon falls in love with Sasha, and plans to defect to the United States with him. However, just before her trip to the US, Katya mysteriously vanishes. Sasha stays in America alone, and over the course of 30 years becomes a successful businessman in America. Many years afterwards, he visits a post-communist Russia seeking to solve Katya's disappearance. He and his niece Lauren work together, searching for clues. They then meet Misha, who has become an old alcoholic; he tells them what really happened to Katya.



The film was shot in Belgrade, Serbia. The score by Rachel Portman was performed by the City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra.


On Rotten Tomatoes the film holds a 9% approval rating based on 22 reviews, with an average rating of 4.12/10. [4]

The film won three awards at the 2016 Prague Independent Film Festival including Best Feature Film, Best Actress (Rebecca Ferguson) and Best Supporting Actor (Anthony Head). [5] [6]

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  1. Kregloe, Karman. "Movies, Marriage and Mayhem with Shamim Sarif: From Moscow with Love (Ep. 10)". AfterEllen. Retrieved 5 July 2013.
  3. Despite the Falling Snow | Film review – A double dose of romantic spy intrigue
  4. "Despite the Falling Snow (2017)". Rotten Tomatoes . Archived from the original on 10 April 2016. Retrieved 3 May 2020.
  5. "A trio of awards for Despite The Falling Snow". Enlightenment Productions. 24 August 2016. Retrieved 18 September 2016.
  6. "Updates, updates & updates!". Anthony Head – The Official Website. Retrieved 25 December 2016.