In this edition, the Festival goes through this paramount event in the history of the 20th century with five movies. These five feature films review the inescapable political event and its main figures from diverse cinematographic perspectives.
The Russian Revolution is one of the decisive events of the 20th century. The Marxist project that materializes as the Bolshevik Revolution defined a great deal of last century's history. The rise of the proletariat generates a new way of understanding social life and brings about heated political and ideological arguments all over the world.
In the early 20's, Russia leads the way of the artistic and experimental avant-garde of global cinema. Artists wanted innovation in the field of accepted means and systems of representation and the Party leaders demanded creation freedom to be at the service of the Revolution. The goal was a total Revolution.
Lenin expressed it was necessary to communicate and consolidate, through the use of images, a new society. “Of all arts, for us, cinema is the most important one.” After the Regime strengthened, the desire of freedom and the revolutionary utopia started to show their limitations. The figure of the “New Man” got entangled with that of persecutory politics of terror.
In the 100th Anniversary of the Russian Revolution, the Festival presents the following feature films:
October - Sergei Eisenstein's classical film, portrays the revolutionary feat and is a perfect example of how elaborated this great Russian director's aesthetic is. Documentary realism blends with poetic symbolism in a powerful creation that undoubtedly influenced the following generation of filmmakers. Exhibiting a super edition, October is a milestone in the history of cinematography that pays homage to the triumph of the proletariat.
Emmanuel Hamon The Soviet Revolution Through its Films (L'Utopie des images de la Révolution russe) is an essential documentary to get acquainted with the most relevant cinematographic films of the 1918 - 1934 period. Through its vast but carefully selected archival material -which includes the testimony of its protagonists- Hamon’s is an astonishing feature film, not only because of the quality of its images but also because of the complex dialog between the aesthetic and the political revolution.
Chagall, Malevich, by Alexander Mittá, recounts, in the form of a comedy-drama, Chagall's homecoming to Vitebsk, where he had occupied the position of Arts Curator and Director of the School of Arts between 1917 and 1918. Revolving around his love relationship with Bella Rosenfeld and his dissension with his artistic and academic rival Kazimir Malévich, the Suprematism's creator, this witty, idealistic, romantic film, explores the resemblance between two unique figures of modern arts.
Angels of Revolution, by Aleksey Fedorchenko, focuses on Kazim’s revolution and the crude repression the Red Army perpetrates. Five avant-garde artists get into a little native community in deep Siberia to indoctrinate its members and socialize them according to the revolutionary values. The avant-garde utopia based on the idea of transforming the world through art is juxtaposed with the violence of every culturization process in an extremely imaginative film with a notorious range of cinematographic resources.
Based in post-revolutionary Leningrand, Kharms, by Ivan Bolotnikov, takes us to the life of the eccentric surrealist writer Daniil Yuvachov, also known as Daniil Kharms. As a satiric outrageous bon vivant who writes children books that are frequently rejected by editors, Kharms shows no interest in social values. Fictional color images are frequently printed over impressive black and white vintage images, which, according to the director, aims at blending reality and his extravagant character's mind.