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Beginning of an Unknown Century
Sat 9th Sep '17 - 18:00 - 20:00
Dir.: Larisa Shepitko/Andrei Smirnov (Soviet Union, 1967)
This two-part omnibus film was commissioned to mark the fiftieth anniversary of the Revolution. Deemed too dark by Brezhnev’s censors, the film was immediately shelved, and first shown only twenty years later in 1987.
Andrei Smirnov’s episode, Angel, is a story of everyday heroism and brutality during the Civil War years of the 1920s. It follows a group of refugees fleeing the conflict, whose train is derailed and captured by bandits.
In Larisa Shepitko’s Homeland of Electricity a young mechanic is sent to a famine-stricken village in order to bring electricity to the people. The striking black-and-white visuals of the film are frequently compared to the works of Aleksandr Dovzhenko, Shepitko’s master.
Banned in the USSR for twenty years.
‘Mesmerizing and electrifying, dark and unconventional, mystical and visionary – the epithets that are used to characterize Larisa Shepitko’s cinematic style by the few critics who know and write about her work, prepare one to meet one of the greatest and it seems well established names in world cinema.’
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