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The New Babylon (1929)

Novyy Vavilon (original title)
In the beginning of the industrial revolution, the Paris Commune was established in 1871 against the rich and the powerful, and violently repressed by the army that remained faithful to a ... See full summary »
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Cast

Credited cast:
David Gutman David Gutman ... Owner of the 'New Babylon' shop
Yelena Kuzmina ... Louise Poirier, the shop-assistant
Andrei Kostrichkin Andrei Kostrichkin ... The main shop-assistant
Sofiya Magarill ... An actress
Arnold Arnold Arnold Arnold ... Commune's Central Committee member (as A. Arnold)
Sergey Gerasimov ... Lutro, the journalist
Yevgeni Chervyakov Yevgeni Chervyakov ... National Guard's officer
Pyotr Sobolevsky ... Jean, the soldier
Yanina Zheymo ... Therese, a seamstress
Oleg Zhakov ... National Guard's soldier
Vsevolod Pudovkin ... Police intendent
Lyudmila Semyonova ... Can-can dancer
A. Glushkova A. Glushkova ... Washerwoman
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Emil Gal Emil Gal ... Bourgeois
S. Gusev S. Gusev ... Poirier, an old man
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Storyline

In the beginning of the industrial revolution, the Paris Commune was established in 1871 against the rich and the powerful, and violently repressed by the army that remained faithful to a tamer form of Republicanism. How could the love story between a young sales girl and a soldier unable to decide if he was pro or against the radical fashion? Two short months were needed for the answer to be found - in blood and tears, and under rain that washes all past memories. Any day, a New Babylon shop will open with frilly things for the bourgeois girls. The washerwomen will be there to wash them. Written by Artemis-9

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Genres:

Drama | History

Certificate:

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Composer Dmitri Shostakovich wrote his first film score for this silent movie. He hurriedly wrote about 90 minutes of music. See more »

Connections

Edited into Histoire(s) du cinéma: Une histoire seule (1989) See more »

User Reviews

 
Heavy handed propaganda with stunning visuals.
3 December 2019 | by st-shotSee all my reviews

There are some incredibly powerful visuals to be found throughout this Soviet paen to the doomed Communard uprising of 1871 in Paris. From its wildly expressionistic opening to the hardened and doomed faces right off of Soviet worker poster art it powerfully conveys its admiration for the heroic underclass while eviscerating the craven bourgeois. With a music score supplied by Shostakovich its an excellent example of the decade old Soviet Union trying to spread its influence by comrading up with the French of yesteryear.

Devine decadence rules in Paris with its attention to materialism and coarse joie de vivre. The haves are enjoying a grand time while the have nots struggle to survive. When the Prussians march on the city the uppercrusts bolt for Versailles, leaving the beleaguered city's defense to the workers to defend. With the threat dissipated the workers demand more rights, the bourgeois see it otherwise by turning the military on them. A stand-off ensues and a civil war erupts.

Babylon's revolutionary fervor was certainly right for the period with it being released a month after the Stock Market Crash in 1929. Emboldened with Eisenstein montage it shouts out its message with a ham fisted juxtaposition and simplicity that may have stirred the proles in 1917 but comes across dated here with the upper class caricatures no different than Griffith's Union troops in black face in his Civil War whitewash. Both remain triumphs of form over content (racism, totalitarianism) that should be be relegated to the dustbin of history,


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Details

Country:

Soviet Union

Language:

None | Russian

Release Date:

30 November 1929 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Shturm neba See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Sovkino See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (2004th restored Version) | (TV premiere) | (Cinemateca Portuguesa) | (cut)

Sound Mix:

Silent

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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