The Soviet Film Industry

By Paul Babitsky; John Rimberg | Go to book overview
Save to active project

II. The Soviet Studio *

1.

Every work of art is evaluated by the Communist Party leaders first and foremost in terms of its ideological impact. Ever since the Revolution the motion picture, singled out by Lenin as "the most important of all the arts for us,''1 has been the object of vigilant supervision by the Kremlin.

During the Civil War, activities in the motion-picture industry came to a virtual standstill. Only a few shattered studios, some crude equipment and a small number of technicians remained. Production of films was further limited by a shortage of photographic chemicals and raw film. The few short films made in those years, called agitki, were crude propaganda pictures intended primarily for showing to Red Army troops as visual aids to political talks and propaganda leaflets. Used for recruiting in rural areas where motion pictures had never been seen before, agitki often had a dramatic success in that they influenced many peasants to join the Red Army. Because of their very novelty, agitprop (agitation-propaganda) films sometimes fulfilled Communist expectations. As time went on, the film studios began to produce some newsreels and documentary films. Not requiring actors, scenery or stages, their production was comparatively simple and became fairly widespread. They usually depicted battles, speeches by political figures or mass demonstrations. As a rule the quality was low because of defects in the raw film and the inexperience of studio employees in chemical laboratory processes and editorial cutting techniques. Newsreels were made in few copies, sometimes only one. As for dramatic films (called "art" films in the Soviet Union), their production fell to zero.

____________________
*
Section II is based largely on Mr. Babitsky's personal experience in Soviet motion-picture studios from the mid-twenties until World War II.

-66-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
The Soviet Film Industry
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 380

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?