Film in the service of the revolution
The Russian revolution had international and utopian ambitions from the very start. The use of new technology was encouraged, and mass communication media such as news films or feature films were used widely to spread the ideas and goals of the new society. These are excerpts from two very different films from the Russian 1920s.
Aelita - Queen of Mars, 1924
© Ruscico - Russian Cinema Council
.Dziga Vertov’s Man with a Movie Camera (1929) is a radical formal experiment with the ambition to describe the new life without any attempts at beautification or “bourgeois” fiction. Science fiction in the Soviet Union had a significance that went beyond pure entertainment; it described the potential to spread ideas on an intergalactic scale. Yakov Prozanov’s feature film Aelita – Queen of Mars (1924) was a major box office success. Ironically, both films were censored in the 1930s due to the increasingly inflexible and prohibitive conditions for Soviet culture and art.