In documentary style, events in Petrograd are re-enacted from the end of the monarchy in February of 1917 to the end of the provisional government and the decrees of peace and of land in ... See full summary »
Sergei M. Eisenstein
His wife dead from poisoning and his chief warrior, Kurbsky, defected to the Poles, Ivan is lonely as he pursues a unified Russia with no foreign occupiers. Needing friendship, he brings to court Kolychev, now Philip the monk, and makes him metropolitan bishop of Moscow. Philip, however, takes his cues from the boyars and tries to bend Ivan to the will of the church. Ivan faces down Philip and lets loose his private force, the Oprichniks, on the boyars. Led by the Tsar's aunt, Euphrosyne, the boyers plot to assassinate Ivan and enthrone her son, Vladimir. At a banquet, Ivan mockingly crowns Vladimir and sends him in royal robes into the cathedral where the assassin awaits. Written by
It's great art.Eisenstein can be compared to Michelangelo,no less.Needless to say,you've got to see part one -slightly inferior to this one,but what does it mean,when you' re watching the seventh art at the height of its terrible powers?-.This part focuses on the feud between Ivan and his aunt who tries to replace him by an effeminate imposter of her choice.Prokofiev music gives the feeling of watching an opera,the scenes in the cathedral recreate a mystery as it was in the Middle Ages as faithfully as you can wish.The peak of the movie remains the banquet,shot in color,thanks to spoils of war film.So stunning is Eisenstein's mastery of the picture that you can hardly exactly tell when the color returns to black and white (which for the final becomes a color in itself)Ivan's last soliloquy might seem aggressive and chauvinistic.But you've got to remember that the USSR were at war at the time ."Ivan" is timeless ,a monument that's as awesome today as it was for its -deleted,because of Stalin- 1958 release.
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