Droll and stark by turns, Eisenstein’s first feature inventively portrays a 1903 factory strike and its drastic repercussions in pre-revolutionary, Tsarist Russia. Made as a State Film in 1925, and as much a paradigm of propaganda filmmaking as Battleship Potemkin and October, Strike nevertheless attracted criticism from much of the Soviet film community of the time for elaborate crowd scenes, unorthodox camera angles and, now legendary montage sequences. Performed by the experimental Proletcult Theatre, the film’s plot, concerning the fallout of a falsely maligned factory-worker’s suicide, is somewhat secondary to the spectacular cinematic flourishes on display throughout, not least in the film’s celebrated but gruesome finale.
Join us to discuss this film in our free film club The Critical Take.
This screening is part of Anger is an Enemy: Cinema of Protest, our season throughout August that features films – from a range of time periods and national cultures – that examine how some of cinema’s most creative and daring directors have tackled and responded to sociopolitical dissent.