Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Aleksandr Ptushko: Sadko - Садко (1952)

Directed: Aleksandr Ptushko
Written: Konstantin Isaev
Camera: Fedor Provorov
Score: Nikolai Rimskii-Korsakov (from the opera Sadko)
Composer of Original Music: Vissarion Shebalin
Sound: Viktor Zorin
Costume Design: Ol'ga Kruchinina
Effects: Sergei Mukhin
With: Sergei Stoliarov, Alla Larionova, Mikhail Troianovskii, Nadir Malishevskii

One of the most difficult years for filmmaking in the Soviet Union saw the production of Aleksandr Ptushko's film adaptation of one of Russia's most beloved heroic tales. National folklore was one of the very few sources from which artists of any genre could create free from the stifling control of state ideology. The choice of material was more than simply a strategic detail in the story of this film's success. Ptushko's 'Sadko' brings to life a virtual catalouge of narrative devices, plot twists, and cultural values that have characterized both popular and high culture throughout Russian history. This fact cannot be overestimated in considering the success of this film, one of the most genuinely popular films of its time among Soviet audiences.

You can watch the movie here.

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