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Russian serial lasting over four-hours was originally released in three parts but for the current DVD release it's presented as one long film. Office girl Vivian Mend (Natalya Glan) and three men fixated with her try to stop a mad scientist from spreading poison gas and killing everyone around. Considering this film runs over four hours that seems like a pretty short plot summery but that's about it in terms of story but there's plenty of action here. Apparently the directors were tired of "high class" films from Russia so they decided to spoof the various American and German movies that were being shown in the country. The best way to describe this film would be a mixture of the epics Lang was making in Germany with a bit of Chaplin and Keaton from America. I think there are a few very funny areas where the Russian directors are trying to "show" America as it was but come off horribly wrong. I'm sure there was nothing mean spirited behind this but it does add a few nice laughs to everything. The main reason to watch this epic are for the various stunts as it's clear the directors tried to throw just about everything they could think of into the film. There are chases via cars, boats and trains. There are fights with guns, bottles, chairs and various other items. We have car crashes, trains crashing into cars and of course the gas that can kill in a matter of seconds. Is the film fun? Sure, the thing has so many weird images and wild stunts that you can't help but find it fun. At the same time, I'm really not sure it needed to run over four hours. I think the running time is going to keep most people away, which is understandable but if you feel you can sit in one place for this long then MISS MEND is a pretty fascinating film.
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