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October (Oktyabr, Октябрь) DVD-9 (English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Portugese)
Posted By : Avax | Date : 25 Dec 2021 12:22:00 | Comments : 1
CLASSICS OF THE SOVIET CINEMA


October (Oktyabr, Октябрь) DVD-9
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October (Oktyabr, Октябрь)
DVD-9 | PAL 720 x 576 (4:3) MPEG2 | Audio: Dolby AC3, 6 Channels, 448 Kbps | 1h:55min | 6,62 Gb | Video menu: Ru, En, Fr
IMDB: 7.8/10 | Language: Silent film | Subtitles: Russian, English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Portugese
Genre: History, Drama | Studio: Sowkino (USSR) | 1927 Year | Director: Sergei Eisenstein; Writers: Grigori Aleksandrov, John Reed (book)
Cast: Vladimir Popov, Vasili Nikandrov, Boris Livanov, Eduard Tisse, Vassily Worker

“Rating and reviewing movies like these are often difficult for the average critic. On one hand, they're done absolutely brilliantly done in ways that take one's breath away; on the other hand, how much credit can you give to a movie that is pure propaganda, especially propaganda for something the reviewer doesn't agree with?

This “realistic re-enactment” of the events of October 25th, 1917, is actually anything but realism. Instead, it is a harrowing and amazing Romantic experience. This is not to say it's bad – it's brilliant! The direction and editing on this film are much more refined than Eisenstein's previous and much-more-heralded film, Brenonsets Potyemkin (Battleship Potemkin), and it has a whole lot more symbolism and focus on literary devices. His fast-paced cutting is not as disjunctive as previously; instead, it works to shock the viewer with the juxtapositions. I don't think I shall ever get the quick back-and-forth cutting between that one soldier's face and the firing machine gun ever out of my mind. It's just that powerful.

This movie is so good, in fact, that it makes me proud to be a Bolshevik... and I'm not, not in any way or form! How's that for being a powerful, well-done movie? The Birth of a Nation didn't effectively make me proud to be a Klansman, for a comparison...

Because of its intense political alignment, I can't see everyone appreciating this film. There will always be those out there who say, “Ah, it's only Communist propaganda” (which is right) “so it's not even worth watching...” (which is wrong). For those who are looking for a magnificent cinematic experience, however, this movie is a fine choice indeed.”Amazon.com

October (Oktyabr, Октябрь) DVD-9
click to enlarge

October (Oktyabr, Октябрь) DVD-9
click to enlarge

“American John Reed, who never met a Bolshevik he didn't admire and trust, wrote a still spellbinding first-hand account, “Ten Days That Shook the World”, of the November (October in the Old Style calendar) revolution that ended Russia's Provisional Government. Directors Sergei Eisenstein and Grigori Aleksandrov dipped into Reed's almost breathless panegyric to the quixotic and jumbled events that led to the capture of the fabled Winter Palace for the epic, “Oktyabr” (shown here as “October”).

Whatever Aleksandrov's contribution, this is emphatically and unmistakably Eisenstein's film and it's a masterpiece. Tracing the increasingly chaotic days from the overthrow of the Romanovs until the victory of the Bolsheviks and their foolishly trusting partners, Eisenstein's 1927 movie freezes the mood and emotions of one of the most turbulent episodes in Russian, indeed in world, history.

“Oktyabr” is, of course, a political polemic and the history portrayed is what the party ordained as truth. Eisenstein was a brilliant innovator but he was no counter-revolutionary deviationist and wrecker. He adhered to the party line and so does the movie.

The restored print is making the rounds of film societies and art theaters and should, if possible, be viewed on a large screen. But even on a TV set “Oktyabr” will reach out and grip the viewer. 10/10. A milestone in film-making.”IMDB.com

October (Oktyabr, Октябрь) DVD-9
click to enlarge

October (Oktyabr, Октябрь) DVD-9
click to enlarge

“I think that Sergei Eisenstein, who has (rightfully) been credited as one of the grandfathers of modern cinema, is sometimes forgotten as someone who can really direct great epic scenes along with making them expertly edited. The filmmaker here knows he's pushing along an ideology, one that is not only encouraged but all but required of him to give to the public. But he also knows that to put out the message there needs to be some conviction, surprise, something to catch eyes as the information's already known. Perhaps even to a greater extent than “Battleship Potemkin”, “October: Ten Days That Shook the World” puts on display a director with total confidence not only in his flourishing, insistent style, but in that of his mostly non-professional actors, crowds, real-locations, sets, and his crew. It's one of the most assured pieces of silent film-making I've ever seen, and it's taken a few viewings to take in everything in one sitting (I ended up watching half an hour, and then sitting back trying to remember everything I just saw, or thought I saw).

Some uses of montage in the film- make that most if not all- rival those of even the better editors working in commercials and music videos today. Like those editors, they're working with images meant to be dynamic and to the point. Here it's the story of the 1917 Bolshevik revolution in Russia, where Lenin took control of the reigns of the provisional government with left the country at a stand-still in poverty. Or, at least, that's how the film would definitely lead things onto. Watching a film like this and seeing 100% accuracy is irrelevant. But watching it to get a sense of what cinema is supposed to- and can do- with tricky subject matter, is completely worthwhile. Some of these scenes are just pure masterpieces of crowd control; when the people mass together in the town square, for example, one might immediately think of the Odessa stairs from “Potemkin”. Here, however, there's more than one chance for such operatic takes on harsh realities. The beginning- where they tear down the statue – is striking enough. But just watch when the crowd has to disperse and runs around early on in the film, or especially the storming of the Winter Palace. Could you do the same material with computers today? More than likely, but not with the same conviction and 'this-was-really-happening' feel that a camera (recreating) on the scene could get. And, sometimes, as when the monument/statue gets “put back together”, it's almost amusing but still convincing of what the medium can do.

And soon enough Eisenstein reaches his climax, the immense lot of 10 days that brought the country to a peak of change and possible prosperity for its people. It's like October for the Russian people of the time is like a thousand or so snapshots of that time and place in the world. The one point that Eisenstein poses for his viewers – not just for his of-the-period silent film crowd but for those watching today – is that he is not making it boring for those who can give themselves to the images, the moments taken with some shots more than others. Anyone getting into editing, I think, should see at least some of Eisenstein's films to get an idea of where the smoke of post-modern film-making generated. October is probably one of his prime examples; if you want to watch it for purely historical or political contexts it may be hit or miss depending on point of view, but it is hard to see as a misfire in telling a story using spectacular and imaginative compositions with the frame, lighting, and with specific, profound musical accompaniment by Edmund Meisel.”IMDB.com

October (Oktyabr, Октябрь) DVD-9
click to enlarge

October (Oktyabr, Октябрь) DVD-9
click to enlarge

Special DVD features (Russian, English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Portugese):

• Chronicle about Vladimir Lenin
• Chronicle of the revolutionary events in Russia
• Filmographies:
    Sergei Eisenstein (director, screenwriter)
    Grigori Aleksandrov (screenwriter, actor)
    Eduard Tisse (cinematographer)
    Vasili Kovrigin (production designer)
    Boris Livanov (actor)
    Vasili Nikandrov (actor)
• Coming on DVD



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Posted By: itsartolie Date: 26 Dec 2021 09:34:33
Although I've seen many of Eisenstein's films (including Potemkin) I've never seen this one, thank you dear Avax for this revolutionary classic!
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