Vera Baranovskaya

  • Karl Anton – Tonka Šibenice aka Tonka of the Gallows (1930)

    1921-1930Czech RepublicDramaKarl AntonSilent

    This major rediscovery creates a bridge between the social realism of G. W. Pabst’s The Joyless Street and the dark lyricism of F. W. Murnau’s Sunrise. The extraordinary Ita Rina (Erotikon) is the title character, a prostitute whose act of pity—keeping chaste company with a condemned man through the night before he is to be hung—returns to threaten her unexpected chance of happiness, as the bride of a young farmer from her native village.Read More »

  • Carl Junghans – Takový je zivot aka Such Is Life (1930)

    1921-1930Carl JunghansCzech RepublicDramaSilent

    The heroine of the film is a proletarian wife and mother. Her husband, a coalminer, seeks solace in alcohol and neglects his work. After he is sacked, he spends most of his time in the pub with his friends and his lover, a waitress. He wastes the money his wife earns as a washerwoman. The woman, with her work and her worries, doesn’t even remember it is her birthday but her neighbours come to visit her to wish her happy birthday. Even this happy day ends in sadness: her husband comes home drunk. When he starts destroying their meagre furniture in a fit of rage, she throws him out. The man moves in with his lover. One day the wife badly scalds herself while washing some linen and after a few days she dies. The man comes home and prepares her a simple funeral which is attended by all the neighbours. After the funeral the husband holds a wake in the local inn. Then they all return to their homes as if nothing had happened. Such is life.Read More »

  • Vsevolod Pudovkin – Konets Sankt-Peterburga AKA The End of St. Petersburg (1927)

    1921-1930DramaSilentUSSRVsevolod Pudovkin

    Filmed to commemorate the tenth anniversary of the 1917 Russian revolution, End of St. Petersburg was the second feature-length effort of director V. I. Pudovkin. Utilizing many of the montage techniques popularized by his contemporary Sergei Eisenstein, Pudovkin details the fall of St. Petersburg into the hands of the Bolsheviks during the revolution. Unlike Eisenstein, Pudovkin concentrates on individuals rather than groups (his protagonist is a politically awakened peasant played by Ivan Chuvelyov) humanizing what might otherwise have been a prosaic historical piece. The mob scenes, though obviously staged for ultimate dramatic impact, are so persuasive that they have frequently been excerpted for documentaries about the Russian Revolution, and accepted by some impressionable viewers as the real thing. Filmed just after his 1926 masterwork Mother, The End of St. Petersburg was followed by the equally brilliant Storm Over Asia.
    — allmovie.comRead More »

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