Predstavleniye (Revue)

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Average Rating: 2.9/5

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As he did with his critically-acclaimed Blockade, a documentary re-creation of the WWII siege of Leningrad, Loznitsa has once again selected excerpts from newsreels, propaganda films, TV shows, and feature films that present an evocative portrait of Soviet life during the 1950s and 60s. With scenes taken from the length and breadth of the Soviet Motherland, REVUE illustrates industry and agriculture (dam construction, steel plants, farmland seeded by hand and plowed with horse), political life (local elections, abundant Lenin iconography, speeches by Khrushchev), popular culture (a village choir, a traveling cinema, a propagandistic stage play), and technology (space exploration, astronaut Yuri Gargarin, new industrial development).The film's fascinating flow of disparate scenes representing typical Soviet life of the period is, seen from today's perspective, alternately poignant, funny, and tragic. The cumulative impact reveals a life of hardship, deprivation, and seemingly absurd social rituals, but one always inspired by the vision, or illusion, of a communist future. Seen from these dual historical and contemporary perspectives, REVUE is both a nostalgic and instructive look back at a communist past that represents social engineering on a grand, and frightening, scale. --© Anthology Archives


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Critic Reviews for Predstavleniye (Revue)

All Critics (6) | Top Critics (3)

  • Director Sergei Loznitsa says more about Soviet art and politics than any talking head or narrated documentary ever could.

    May 14, 2009
  • By juxtaposing labor-filled activities with TV shows and plays proclaiming the 'bounties' of revolution, the film offers glimpses of a government-sanctioned alt universe.

    May 13, 2009 | Rating: 5/6 | Full Review…

    David Fear

    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • Revue melds disparate images of Soviet life during the 1950s and '60s into a luminous time capsule of patriotic fervor and political fealty.

    May 13, 2009 | Rating: 4/5
  • Paints a chilling portrait of the U.S.S.R. simply by stringing together a motley mix of Communist propaganda from the Fifties and Sixties.

    May 14, 2009 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
  • A well-edited documentary that's equally informative and entertaining.

    May 13, 2009 | Rating: 8.0/10 | Full Review…
  • Sergei Loznitsa's choice to intersperse footage of smiling farmers and dogma-spouting steelworkers with folk dancers and village choirs throughout Revue doesn't feel flippant, or even discordant.

    May 11, 2009 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

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