Archive for December 26th, 2009

by Allan Fish

(USSR 1929 90m) DVD1

There was a mother who had three sons

p  Alexander P.Dovzhenko  d/w/ed  Alexander P.Dovzhenko  ph  Danylo Demutsky  m  Igor Belza  art  Vadim Myuller, Iosif Shpinel

Semyon Svashenko (Timos, the Ukrainian), Amvrosi Buchma (laughing-gassed soldier), Georgi Khorkov (Red Army soldier), Dimitri Erdman (German officer), Sergei Petrov (German soldier), Nikolai Kuchinsky (Petliura), A.Yevdakov (Tsar Nicholas II), Luciano Albertini (Raffaele),

Dovzhenko said about Arsenal in his autobiography; “I wanted to make a film about the revolution.  Not the palace revolution, but the revolution of peasants, workers and intellectuals, who made the revolution and then did not get anything for it.”  The first thing that comes to mind is that Dovzhenko did well to keep these feelings to himself when he made it, or he may have followed many artists from Ukraine into the black hole of the prison camp purges.  It’s a commonly perceived notion that Dovzhenko was a Ukrainian nationalist, and yet at the time of the film’s release he was a committed Bolshevik in favour of Ukraine’s unity with Mother Russia.  Even in Earth, his commonly accepted magnum opus, the film comes down in favour of communism, but there are hints of nationalistic ideology not far beneath the surface. (more…)


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