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Russian Historic Cinema

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Film Clip #2 Analysis

I choose clip #2 from the three given. This clip is from the movie Leviathan and the director is Andrey Zvyagintsev. The character shown in the scene is Vadim, who is the mayor of the town. This clip is near the end of the film and is important because he is looking for guidance because he is lost. This film fit into the social context in the Russain Federation at the time of its release because of the religious ideologies represented in the film. One technical component of the clip was obvious use of low key lighting used during the whole clip. This was intended to shroud the scene with anticipation, an uneasy feeling, and a more depressive tone. The second technical aspect of the clip was the sound. Throughout most of the scene water can be heard dripping in the background. The sound is very unsettling and is always in the background and once you notice the sound it becomes more pronounced.. This aspect is added to allow for the audience to understand that this place that the mayor is in is dark,wet, and cold. They also created the drips to be very disorienting because they echo of the walls of the chamber, which adds to the ominous feeling the viewer experiences. The third technical opponent of the scene was long take that was used for almost three full minutes. The shot encompassed the mayors face and the candle he was holding while he had a discussion about his life. This aspect of the scene allows the suspense of the scene to be built up. You see a man holding a candle in a dark room and he is talking to someone and you never see the other man during this whole take of three minutes. The fourth technical component is the use of the background and foreground. This clip does a great job of having a very minimal change in both the foreground and background but still conveying enough information. The foreground for most of the clip is a simple flame from a candle. This allowed for the audience to have some source of light in contrast to the darkness that consumed the background. The light offered a resemblance of hope for the mayor who seemed to have lost all of his. The fifth technical competent of the clip was the use of full front positioning. For most of the scene the mayor is positioned at full frontal while talking. This allows for the audience to get the most intimate with the character. This is important in this scene because the whole clip as well as the movie need to convey deep emotions within the characters. This is also a great way for us as the audience to see the mayor with his defenses down and we can create a better understanding of him.

Short Essay

The theme of World War II in Soviet/Russian cinema is very important and a large part of their history. Soviet/Russian films have depicted World War II in numerous ways from many different viewpoints throughout the history of the country.

One film we watched in class that had a World War II theme was The Fall of Berlin which was directed by Mikhail Chiaureli. It came out directly after World War II in 1950 and was very popular. This release date of the Fall of Berlin as well as the director are important aspects of the film that tie into the social context of the times. The 1950s were the first years after the war and Germany as well as the Soviet Union were in ruins. But releasing a film that has a strong positive depiction of the Soviet Union and their fearless leaders was a political statement as well as a tribute to the people who fearlessly fought. One major conceptual idea of this film was that the Soviet Union leaders were a decisive aspect of winning the war. This was shown in the technical components of the film through aspects like lighting, angles, and mise en scene. The lighting around Stalin and his advisors was high key, while Hitler was shown in a more dismal and low key lighting. The scenes were designed to show Stalin as a man who lead the Soviet Union by working with his comrades to achieve victory. Hitler was shown as a man who inspired through fear and discipline. Contextually the film showed Stalin working with his comrades around a map, while it showed hitler around his map and his advisors all fearfully standing behind him. This achieved the purpose of glorifying the Soviet Union and demonizing the Nazi’s and Hitler.

The second film we watched in class that had a World War II theme was Ivan’s Childhood. This movie was directed by Andrei Tarkovsky and came out in 1962. This movie came out during

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