Alexander Nevsky

Admission UCB Students: 50 cents
Others: Regular Viewing Member ticket prices

Eisenstein's lavish, stylized spectacle is at once the saga of a Teutonic invasion in the year 1242 and an acutely timed patriotic rally for defense of homeland, made at the height of the Stalin era on the eve of World War II. (Production was in fact speeded up to get the word out, and the famous Battle of the Ice was thus shot on a set in the springtime, as if shooting it in the winter snow would not have been a remarkable enough feat of filmmaking.) More conventional than his earlier works with its straight dramatic story line, exalted hero figure and secondary love interest, Eisenstein's first completed sound film nevertheless marks new territory for the great innovator and for the epic film in general. The score by Prokofiev is counterpointed in a meticulously arranged dynamic of structural analogies with the memorable camera work of Eduard Tisse.
“It is... on a base of interplaying human emotions... of human experience, that the cinema must also build its structural approaches.... Take, for example... the beginning of the Battle of the Ice. This episode passes through all the shades of an experience of increasing terror, where approaching danger makes the heart contract and the breathing irregular. The structure... is, with variations, exactly modeled on the inner process of such an experience.” (S.M. Eisenstein, “Film Form”)

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