A work of epic ambition, this vision of near-future Russia consists of seven vignettes centered on an unfinished building whose architect perhaps went mad. In some of the segments the building is seen, in others merely mentioned. Its ensemble of characters mainly represent Russia’s “superfluous” people (artists, intellectuals). Many voices are heard, ranging from Kyrgyz migrant workers to the children of a deceased oligarch; some sections are only loosely connected to the story of the ruin, one turns out to be a flashback, and others recapitulate events seen earlier from slightly different angles. Of course Under Electric Clouds is a meditation on today’s Russia: a country torn to shreds by delusions of grandeur, corruption, an unquestioning belief in authority, and a fatal passion for the past that goes hand in hand with an outrageous obsession with the future—making for an empty present. Like his late father, German Jr. favors wildly meandering plan-séquences, expansive choreographies of actors milling in and out of scenes, blasted landscapes, and dialogue delivered with fierce panache, but in place of German Sr.’s fury, there’s a playful, lighthearted, dreamy and almost earnest quality here that’s a joy to behold. (Olaf Möller, Film Comment May/June 2015)