The Bolshevik Trilogy
Three Films by Vsevolod Pudovkin
After serving alongside his fellow Russians in the first World War, Vsevolod Pudovkin was radically altered by a life-changing screening of D.W. Griffith’s Intolerance, inspiring the young man to shift away from his studies in chemistry in order to pursue the cinematic arts.
Pudovkin embarked on his narrative feature debut in 1926 with Mother, regarded by many as a masterpiece of the Russian silent era, and a showcase for Pudovkin’s emotive approach to editing. Pudovkin followed Mother’s tale of proletariat uprising with the Bolshevik-themed The End of St. Petersburg and the Mongolia-set Storm Over Asia in 1927 and 1928 respectively, dazzling the world with a trio of masterful films centered around this tumultuous and revolutionary period in Russian history.
Combining Mother and The End of St. Petersburg with a brand-new remaster from Lobster Films of Storm Over Asia, Flicker Alley is proud to offer The Bolshevik Trilogy - Three Films by Vsevolod Pudovkin in a 2-disc Blu-ray collection for cinephiles, and lovers of epic, innovative filmmaking alike.
Feature Films Include:
Mother (1926) – A father and son find themselves on opposite sides of the Russian Revolution of 1905, leaving the mother torn between them. But when her husband is killed and her son is wrongfully imprisoned in a labor camp, the mother (played by Pudovkin’s wife, Anna Nikolaevna Zemtsova) is spurred into action, joining the revolutionaries in an effort to take on the Tsar's Army. Based on the novel by Maxim Gorky, Pudovkin’s debut narrative feature is both a riveting tale of revolution and a showcase for the young filmmaker’s cutting-edge techniques. This edition is presented with English intertitles, and features a piano score by Antonio Coppola. (Runtime: 87 minutes)
The End of St. Petersburg (1927) – Created to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the October Revolution, the film tells the story of how the Bolshevik party came to power, but through the lens of a peasant boy’s journey from slave laborer to political revolutionary. Pudovkin employed a mix of classical and montage editing styles in order to produce a feeling of tension in the audience. The result is both a deeply emotional and stylized work of epic filmmaking. This edition is presented with original Russian intertitles with English subtitles, and features an orchestral score composed by Vladimir Yurovsky. (Runtime: 73 minutes)
Storm Over Asia (1928) – Set in a fictional British-occupied Mongolia, Storm Over Asia follows a young Mongolian fur trapper (Valeri Inkizhinov) who skirts a death sentence by falsely claiming to be a descendent of the great warrior Genghis Khan. Filmed largely on location in Mongolia, Storm Over Asia incorporates an authentic documentary feel into a stirring melodrama, distinguishing the film as a major accomplishment of Russian cinema. Scanned from 35mm preservation elements in a new 2K remaster by Lobster Films, this edition is presented with original Russian intertitles with English subtitles, and accompanied by an impassioned score by composer Timothy Brock, performed by the Olympia Chamber Orchestra. (Runtime: 131 minutes)
Bonus Materials Include:
Chess Fever (1925): Pudovkin’s directorial debut, this ingenious satire of the Moscow chess craze combines staged scenes with documentary footage, and features a number of cameos from the worlds of cinema and chess. (Runtime: 28 minutes).
A Revolution in Five Moves: A visual essay by Maxim Pozdorovkin showcasing the five edits that inspired the Bolshevik revolution. (Runtime 9 minutes)
“Five Principles of Editing”: A comparison of Pudovkin’s “Five Principles of Editing”. (Runtime: 7 minutes)
Amatuer Images of St. Petersburg (1930): (Runtime: 2 minutes)
Notebooks of a Tourist Presents: St. Petersburg (c. 1920): (Runtime: 2 minutes)
Audio Commentary - Storm Over Asia (1928): Featuring film historian and scholar, Jan Christopher Horak.
Audio Commentary - Mother (1926): Featuring Russian film historian and curator Peter Bagrov.
Souvenir Booklet: Featuring a new essay by film author and historian Amy Sargeant.