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Soviet Film in the 1920's
Transcript of Soviet Film in the 1920's
Soviet Film in the 1920s
By: Abbey LaTour
What Helped the Development of Soviet Film?
The potential of film as propaganda for the communist government
The Soviet government’s invention of agit-vehicles (trains, trucks, and even steamboats) these vehicles were painted with caricatures/slogans and they carried propaganda leaflets, printing presses and even small film making setups
Lenin said “Of all the arts, for us the cinema is the most important.” This could be because of the opportunities it presented for propaganda and education for the largely illiterate population
What Limited the Development of Soviet Film?
The Soviet Montage movement was one of the most influential movements of the time. Its use of low-angle framing and dynamic cutting was used for similar propaganda films for other countries.
Compared to French and German cinema, the Soviet Montage movement emerged during the 1920's
Soviet Montage is an avant-garde type film making which arose within a commercial film industry
This movement began in 1925 and was lucrative partly because the films made most of their money abroad
This aided in building up the Soviet film industry
At the same time, however, criticisms were increasingly being leveled at the Montage filmmakers by government and film-industry officials. The main change was formalism, a vague term implying that a film was too complex for mass audiences and that its makers were more interested in film style than in correct ideology.
Eisenstein's Battleship Potemkin (Bronenosets Potyomkin, 1925)
Strike (Stachka, 1925)
October (Oktyabr, 1928) also known as Ten Days that Shook the World)
Pudovkin's Mother (Mat, 1926),
The End of St. Petersburg (Konets Sankt-Peterburga, 1927)
Storm Over Asia (Potomok Chingis-Khana, 1928); Alexander Dovzhenko's Zvenigora (1928)
After the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917, the new government controlled the film industry, however, it was not initially able to finance filmmaking.
During War Comunism (1918 to 1920), the Soviet Union was in a state of civil war, leaving the film industry struggling to survive.
Communists favored state ownership of all companies, so existing film firms awaited nervously to know the outcome.
A pre-revolutionary director, Evgenii Bauer, died in 1917, and his producer, Alexander Khanzhonkov, was struck with illness, ending the company's existence.
Other companies fled to surrounding countries in order to avoid the government overtaking their industry, or hid their film stock.
Major Players in the Soviet Cinema
- issued the "Lenin-Proportions" which stated that films needed to be equal parts educational and entertaining. This exemplifies the reasoning behind so many historical based films
pioneered the Soviet film style known as montage. This style was achieved through editing. Eisenstein's love for editing came from the idea that it could be used to manipulate people's emotions and create film metaphors. Also utilized montage to glorify the power of the masses
- was not only a director but also a screenwriter and an actor. Another pioneer of the Montage movement but preferred to focus on the achievements of individuals instead of the masses like Eisenstein
First to create documentaries or fact based films
Russian film directors Sergei Eisenstein and Dziga Vertov used montage,juxtaposing using editing, as a new technique in film in the 1920s which underlie the aesthetics of contemporary videos