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Gorky 3: My Universities (1940)

Moi universitety (original title)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Nikolai Valbert ...
Aleksei Pechkov (Gorky) (as N. Valbert)
Stepan Kayukov ...
Semenov
Nikolai Dorokhin ...
Chatunov
Nikolai Plotnikov ...
Nikiforytch
Lev Sverdlin ...
The Guardian
Daniil Sagal ...
Pletnev
Mikhail Povolotsky ...
The Student
Pavel Shpringfeld ...
Gratchik
Vladimir Maruta ...
Romas
K. Zubkov ...
The Beard Baker
A. Smolko ...
Pacha the gipsy
Valentina Dancheva ...
The Woman (as V. Dancheva)
Irina Fedotova ...
Macha
Pavel Dozhdev ...
Yacha (as Pavlik Dozhdev)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Mikhail Troyanovsky ...
Professor Studentsky (as M. Troyanovsky)
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Storyline

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Genres:

Biography | Drama

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Release Date:

27 March 1940 (Soviet Union)  »

Also Known As:

University of Life  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Follows On His Own (1939) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Maxim Gorky Trilogy III
11 February 2004 | by (Belgium) – See all my reviews

As in the previous installments (The Childhood of Maxim Gorky and My Apprenticeship), the conclusion of The Maxim Gorky trilogy boasts great cinematography, visual poetry and rich characterisations, but unfortunately, where there had been precious little political propaganda before, this final movie is now full of it.

Peshkov is in his late teens and, too poor to fulfill his dream of enrolling in university, he gets a job as a baker, working for the vicious upstart Semyonov. Because Peshkov/Gorky is now old enough to be politically aware, he can be used as a mouthpiece for Stalinist thought, most notably in the scene where he says man should love his fellow man, but not exploiters like Semyonov. There's a road from that line straight to the gulags of Siberia.

And yet there's more Gorky than Stalin in the characterisation of Semyonov, who's also the movie's most fully realized individual, often more pathetic than villaineous.

Like Satyajit Ray's Apu's Trilogy, it ends with its main character finding some sort of spiritual completion, but here it's done so heavy handed, so laden with obvious symbolism, it becomes almost laughable. Sad that such a great trilogy must end on a false note.

**1/2 (out of 4)


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