Later, I learned of a movie called "Russian Ark." The premise of the movie is a group of people sneaking into the Winter Palace. Once inside, Russian history comes to life. They sneak in thru the door that Nicolay and I found...
Is that really the premise, sneaking in?
My BF and I watched it on DVD, wonderful movie. It's most famous for being all shot in 1 single, 96-minute moving take through the Hermitage Palace, not a single edit done, involving literally thousands of actors, a brilliant tour-de-force as all their movements are meticulously stage-managed within this vast building.
But it's surrealistic, spanning many historical periods & incidents separated by time, narrated by a ghost-like character, and nobody sneaks in, except that the European observer the narrator addresses is the camera lens, there but not there. My BF was a Russian Major, had lived & traveled there, and he did a simultaneous translation for me. Though my Slavic helped me a little on my own, and knowledge of Russian history.
Yeah, get the Russian Ark
if you can, it will really take your breath away.