Friday, March 27, 2009

Upcoming Summer Film Preview

Ivan The Terrible, Part I & II (Sergei M. Eisenstein, 1944 & 1958)


This summer’s most important cinematic event is Sergei Eisenstein Ivan the Terrible, Part I & II. Sergei Eisenstein is a landmark Soviet Film-maker and theorist. He was the driving force towards the reconsideration of the montage as he described it as the essence of Cinema. The montage is a technique of film editing where a scene is emotionally greater than the sum of its shots through linkages and juxtapositions. The Ivan the Terrible diptych, officially released in 1944 and 1958, is his ultimate work and it follows the 16th century Russian Tsar Ivan IV (Nikolai Cherkasov). Set in 1547 the film is about his effort to unite the turbulent country and is an intriguing meditation on power, superstition and jealousy. The engaging score by the Sergei Prokofiev raises the atmosphere of heroism and paranoia to an extraordinary level. Joseph Stalin, the General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1922 to 1953, praised the film and its admirable hero. An epoch piece of film art its highlights are its stylization which includes highly detailed facial characteristics, expressionistic sets, grotesque costumes and grandiose scale. With a new 35mm print all the way from Russia this is will be an experience devoted moviegoers are sure to relish.(Canadian Film Institute, Library and Archives Canada, 395 Wellington Street, Saturday, May 9, 7:00 and 9:00)-David Davidson

3 comments:

the dfeatist said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
the dfeatist said...

My two favourite montage sequences from the Ivan films:

1) The montage where Ivan trains a lot to inspirational music (and presumably learns how to be Terrible).

2. The montage where Ivan tries out different outfits and his mother helps him pick the most fabulous one.

David Davidson said...

I look forward to seeing it. When do you come back to Ottawa Dan.