Thursday, December 01, 2011

Home Movies of the Romanovs,
Tonight at the PFA

The extensive retrospective of films created by Russian director/writer/editor Dziga Vertov and his associates at the Pacific Film Archive, concludes tonight with a screening of "The Fall of the Romanov Dynasty" at 7 pm. For Western audiences his most familiar work is "The Man With the Movie Camera", a classic Soviet avant-garde film.

I regret to say that due to the PFA's location on the Cal campus and being a BART ride away, my schedule has not allowed for time to catch the other films in this series, but I'll be there tonight.

From the PFA program notes:

A devastating chronicle of Tsarist Russia from the eve of World War I until its brutal demise in the revolutions of February and October 1917, The Fall of the Romanov Dynasty comprises hundreds of films that Esfir Shub unearthed and rescued from damp cellars and other neglected corners of the Soviet Union, including newsreels and home movies taken by the Tsar’s own cameramen. Using the film splice as a cudgel, Shub contrasts the Imperial Family in opulent ballrooms, regal processions, and garden tea parties with the backbreaking toil of the masses, a bitter satire that makes the Revolution seem both historically inevitable and triumphant.

This silent film will have live music performed by Judith Rosenberg on the piano. Click here for more information.

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