IMDb > Happiness (1935)

Happiness (1935) More at IMDbPro »Schaste (original title)

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Happiness -- A hapless loser (with the surname of Loser) undergoes misadventures with avaracious clergy, a tired horse, and a walking granary (among other things) on his road to collectivized happiness.


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Release Date:
7 April 1935 (USA) See more »
A hapless loser (with the surname of Loser) undergoes misadventures with avaracious clergy, a tired horse... See more » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
Party ideology? Artistic and ethic creed? Both?'s great, to say the least! See more (5 total) »


  (in credits order)
Pyotr Zinovyev ... Khmyr - an ill-fated mujik
Yelena Yegorova ... Anna Khmyrova - the mujik's wife
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Nikolai Cherkasov
Mikhail Gipsi ... Taras Platonovich
Viktor Kulakov
V. Lavrentyev
G. Mirgorian
Lidiya Nenasheva ... Nun
V. Uspensky

Directed by
Aleksandr Medvedkin 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Aleksandr Medvedkin 

Cinematography by
Gleb Troyanski  (as G. Troyansky)
Production Design by
Aleksei Utkin  (as Aleksandr Utkin)
Music Department
Georges Bernand .... piano: 1971 French sound version
Michel Fano .... percussions: 1971 French sound version
Nikolai Golovanov .... conductor: 1971 French sound version
Modest Mussorgsky .... music: 1971 French sound version (as Modeste Moussorgsky)
The U.S.S.R. Radio Grand Symphony Orchestra .... orchestra: 1971 French sound version (as Orchestre Symphonique de la Radio d'U.R.S.S.)

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies
  • SLON  French version

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Schaste" - Soviet Union (original title)
See more »
95 min | West Germany:66 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Movie Connections:
Featured in The Train Rolls On (1973)See more »


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18 out of 19 people found the following review useful.
Party ideology? Artistic and ethic creed? Both?'s great, to say the least!, 25 September 2007
Author: stalker vogler from Xanadu

Medvedkin may not be on a par with Eisenstein in terms of importance in cinema history, but he was definitely one of the great Soviet pioneers with many great ideas. If you want to know him better I recommend a great Chris Marker documentary from 1992 called Le Tombeau d'Alexandre, a movie that contains a great deal of actual footage of Medbedkin talking about his cinema days. Medvedkin's career as a director is connected with his affiliation with the Communist Party, Schastye itself is a propaganda movie that advertises the benefits of the kolhoz. This was the Russian name for collective farming,the Soviets had this great idea (that obviously backfired) that if industry has greater productivity due to a collective effort, this has to work in agriculture as well. It didn't, but in 1932 when the movie was produced nobody anticipated that. Medvedkin, and Soviet movie-maker generally, had a very clear idea about the new "developments" introduced by the Party but they were actually convinced they were for the best. Given the fact that Communism was not even introduced at the moment in many of the Eastrern countries of Europe, and given the fact that many left-wing intellectuals in Western Europe were convinced the Russians were doing O.K in the 60's and 70's, I think that early Soviet cinema should be looked at with an open mind and dissociated from the actions of the Party (and the killings, and the forced labor etc. ) even if one cannot dissociate It from the Party ideology. Schastye is, from every cinema angle you look at it, a gem. The direction, editing, acting, set-design etc. are simply great. It's interesting to watch it and compare it to the comedies of Chaplin or Keaton that were popular at the time. There are some common elements between them (some of the "objective surrealism" identified by Breton in Keaton's movies is present here). The story is coherent and engaging. Most of the comedy is deeper than anything in Keaton, toughing social issues such as the clergy's hypocrisy, the dependence of the state on the peasants the exploitation of the women in Russian society and so on. I found some connections with much later movies from Bunuel for example. Animation is also used to emphasize the wealthy who are so well of that food jumps in their mouth by itself. Overall a great experience, fun to watch and historically interesting on so many levels.

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