132 Great Directors: Aleksandr Dovzhenko

“But these days getting even a single film done is a minor miracle or heroic accomplishment, so the comrades looked on my talk about three films as a fantasy, or at least a wish with no hope of fulfillment.”

What Got This Director Here?
: Earth.

My Favorite Past Experience Was…: Earth.

What Did I Watch: Ivan.

Where Does He Fit: Ivan opens with montages of nature and men’s bodies working, before explosions disrupt the peace, a quick series of moments that shows that Dovzhenko was well suited for the sound era even with hammy actors spouting on about the power of collectivism. It may have been a more popular version of the same themes as Earth by being less subtle, but the rhythms and music and sights of the land still hold their power, and prove that he was a natural cinematic poet. Shame that the human cost is totally ignored, but as propaganda, it’s effectively pretty in many different ways.


Most Valuable Asset: The landscape and deluded ideals.
Most Excited For: Life in Bloom, I guess?
Did They Deserve a Spot?: Yes.

Coming Up Next: Abel Gance and his epics.


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