Kino-Pravda Nos. 14–17

This program features some of Vertov and Aleksandr Rodchenko's most ingenious experiments in graphic design. For Kino-Pravda No. 14, Vertov wanted to contrast the Land of Capitalism, with its gleaming skyscrapers and fetish for luxury, with life “on the other side,” and so Rodchenko devised a wooden mobile installation that could rotate like a globe, making three-dimensional intertitles appear to float in space. For no. 15, Vertov enlisted cameraman Boris Frantsisson, and Ivan Beliakov and Mikhail Kaufman, to invent tricks of process photography, including a firework of newspapers bursting like “agit-shells,” and the Proletarian “hammer of knowledge” smashing out Religion. No. 16, the Spring Kino Pravda, is “A Lyrical View Newsreel” featuring rare glimpses of Sergei Eisenstein's first film, Dnevnik Glumova (Glumov's Diary), which Vertov helped create and which was meant to be projected during one of Eisenstein's Proletkult stage productions. No. 17 showcases Elizaveta Svilova's virtuoso rapid-fire editing and cinematographer Mikhail Kaufman's Constructivist aesthetic in depicting a harmonious gathering of workers and peasants at the All-Union Agricultural Exhibition in Moscow, part of the government's smychka (“alliance”) campaign to bring about “the dictatorship of the proletariat.”

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