7.3/10
5,180
43 user 41 critic

Earth (1930)

Zemlya (original title)
Unrated | | Drama | 17 October 1930 (USA)
In the peaceful countryside, Vassily opposes the rich kulaks over the coming of collective farming.
Reviews
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

Photos

Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Stepan Shkurat ... Opanas (as S. Shkurat)
Semyon Svashenko ... Vasyl - son of Opanas (as S. Svashenko)
Yuliya Solntseva ... Daughter of Opanas (as Yu. Solntseva)
Yelena Maksimova ... Natalya - Vasyl's fiancee (as Ye. Maksimova)
Nikolai Nademsky ... Ded Semyon (as N. Nademsky)
Ivan Franko ... Kulak Belokon (as I. Franko)
Pyotr Masokha ... Khoma - son of kulak Belokon (as P. Masokha)
Vladimir Mikhaylov ... Priest (as V. Mikhaylov)
Pavel Petrik ... Young Party-Cell Leader (as P. Petrik)
P. Umanets ... Chairman of the Village Soviet (as Umanets)
Ye. Bondina Ye. Bondina ... Farm Girl
Luka Lyashenko Luka Lyashenko ... Young Kulak (as L. Lyashenko)
Edit

Storyline

Dovzhenko's "film poem" style brings to life the collective experience of life for the Ukranian proles, examining natural cycles through his epic montage. He explores life, death, violence, sex, and other issues as they relate to the collective farms. An idealistic vision of the possibilities of Communism made just before Stalinism set in and the Kulack class was liquidated, "Earth" was viewed negatively by many Soviets because of its exploration of death and other dark issues that come with revolution. Written by Jeff Walker <star5780@ix.netcom.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Included among the "1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die", edited by Steven Schneider. See more »

Quotes

Opanas: There is no god.
See more »

Alternate Versions

In 2012, the Oleksandr Dovzhenko National Center restored this film with Ukrainian inter-titles and a new score composed and performed by DakhaBrakha, a Ukrainian ethnic-chaos band. The running time is 83 minutes. See more »

Connections

Spoofed in Sztuka kochania (1989) See more »

User Reviews

 
True communist poetry.
7 March 2006 | by milocSee all my reviews

From its opening, with an elderly man dying surrounded by impassive adults and obliviously playing children, to its wildly emotional finale, this breathtaking silent work transcends its politics and functions as poetry. It's unmistakeably Soviet -- the messianic fervor of the scene in which the farming community greets the arrival of a tractor would seem like parody if it weren't for Dovzhenko's extraordinary sense of lyricism. Using repeated shots of the expectant farmers crying out "It's coming!" intercut with an empty horizon, he builds the moment so completely that you're excited in spite of yourself; you totally believe in that tractor. (As one of the "rich farmers" says, shellshocked by this threat to their future, "It's a fact. It's here.")

To call the film propaganda, while true, seems rather beside the point. Aren't all films? Dovzhenko's manipulations are certainly no less devious than those of western film. Switch the communist message to a patriotic or even capitalist one, and the setting to the World War II Pacific or the old west or wherever you choose and it's no different than, say, "Shane" or "Gone With the Wind" or "The Passion of the Christ" -- just much, much better.

The story, told in rich montages of motionless figures, fruit, machinery, skies, rippling fields, and above all faces, weaves its "official" message about collective farms and private property with larger themes of religion, the generation gap, and the cycle of life: the Earth that gives life takes it away. A group of children giggle and spy on an old man listening at his friend's grave for a last message; a man sits up on his deathbed to eat a last sweet pear; a serious young radical, alone, gives himself up to a joyful moonlit dance before falling into the dirt. Dovzhenko's approach has less to do with narrative than with creating visual textures; it looks as though Terrence Malick watched this more than a few times before making "Days of Heaven." Dovzhenko's discontinuities and repetitions can be initially bewildering, but they pack a concrete wallop. The images accumulate and crystallize, carrying greater and greater weight, and, as an aging farmer becomes suddenly radicalized by tragedy, the direct shots of his face, hardening in bewilderment and outrage, take on a thunderous power.


36 of 52 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 43 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
Edit

Details

Country:

Soviet Union

Language:

None | Russian

Release Date:

17 October 1930 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Земля See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (1991 Kino video)

Sound Mix:

Silent

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed