- Title: A century on Russian 1917 revolution inspires cutting-edge film
- Date: 31st March 2017
- Summary: MOSCOW REGION, RUSSIA (RECENT) (REUTERS) ARCHIVE STAFF ROLLING FILM REEL ON MACHINE FILM REELS IN SPECIALISED EQUIPMENT BEHIND GLASS VARIOUS OF FILM CANS STACKED (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) HEAD CURATOR OF GOSFILMFOND, PYOTR BAGROV SAYING: "Even now, when it seems that practically everything is readily available online, it is important to watch films on big screen and to select them, because when the choice is huge, one must help in this selection. And that's where film historians are great help. We have a big team of film historians, and staff of Gosfilmfond and our friends on the side. We put together this program, some things we filter." VARIOUS OF WOMAN WORKING WITH FILM REEL ON MONTAGE TABLE FILM HISTORIAN, EVGENY MARGOLIT WALKING UP TO FILM POSTER VARIOUS OF FILM POSTERS (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) FILM HISTORIAN, EVGENY MARGOLIT SAYING: "Soviet film was made by boys, literally speaking, because people who were 20 plus or minus 2-3 years, people who were outcasts of this system, even judging by age, people that came from the periphery - geographical or social - which is equally important, before them the Revolution opened up such a range of possibilities, that made their heads spin."
- Embargoed: 14th April 2017 14:21
- Keywords: Russia Revolution 1917 film Sergei Eisenstein cinema Soviet film
- Location: MOSCOW REGION / UNIDENTIFIED LOCATION
- City: MOSCOW REGION / UNIDENTIFIED LOCATION
- Country: Russia
- Topics: Arts/Culture/Entertainment,Film
- Reuters ID: LVA0056AAJ5FX
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:The Russian Revolution of 1917 dramatically changed the country's fate, impacted the rest of the world and influenced art. The Bolshevik revolution that saw Vladimir Lenin lead a revolt that overthrew the Russian government split the country and uprooted its population, millions lost their lives or fled the country in the upheaval that ensued.
But although Russia was on the verge of civil war, the sudden start of a new political era also became a time of opportunity for new artistic talent. Revolutionary Russia became a blank canvas for young artists who were witnessing first hand the fast changes to their historical landscape.
"Soviet film was made by boys, literally speaking, because people who were 20 plus or minus 2-3 years, people who were outcasts of this system, even judging by age, people that came from the periphery - geographical or social - which is equally important, before them the Revolution opened up such a range of possibilities, that made their heads spin," says film historian, Evgeny Margolit.
While the country was erasing its imperial past, artists were rejecting old forms, creating new language of representation.
Russian film experts say cinema masterpieces were infused with a new political ideology that was groundbreaking.
Pyotr Bagrov, the head curator of the state film archive Gosfilmfond, says Russian cinema influenced world cinema in the twentieth century - from Golden Age of German film to French new wave of the 60s.
"First of all, the impact of not only Russian but also Soviet filmmaking on world cinema is the impact of the avant-garde of the 20s. 95 percent of the avant-garde of the 20s is related to the Revolution. Either the films were directly about the events of the Revolution.... or they dealt with its aftermath.... or its consequences in the daily life... this is where a new language was created."
Referring to iconic Soviet film director Sergei Eisenstein, Bagrov says his 1928 political drama "October" is an example of Russian artists introducing a new practice of montage.
"October" depicts the tumultuous events of 1917, as the czarist regime is toppled in February, Lenin returns home from exile, and the Bolsheviks overthrow Provisional Government, which failed to unite the country fighting the First World War.
"The new revolutionary montage - this type of short editing - which here was referred to as "American montage" and in the rest of the world as "Russian montage" - a patchwork, this is of course was created in the kaleidoscopic mind of a person who lives in a state of constant change, a world that is constantly changing. Reds, whites, greens - you don't know who's good, who's bad, who's friend or foe," Bagrov told Reuters TV at Gosfilmfond in Moscow region.
The major archive maintains thousands of films, but Bagrov says many Soviet films have suffered extensive damage or have been lost. The archives experts are tasked with keeping a century of cinema alive.
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
- Copyright Notice: (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2017. Open For Restrictions - http://about.reuters.com/fulllegal.asp
- Usage Terms/Restrictions: None