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10 January 2016: Alexander Nevsky


Alexander Nevsky
Sergei Eisenstein
1938 | 111 min | B/W | 35mm

"Eisenstein created this rousing nationalist epic of medieval Slavs driving out Teutonic invaders. Despite the screen time devoted to a belabored comic subplot concerning a love triangle, Alexander Nevsky remains one of his most popular and influential films. The film provides endless examples of Eisenstein’s genius not just at combining shots but at composing them as well, while the battle scenes demonstrate his continued mastery at choreographing electrifying action. The use of an extremely low horizon line has influenced such filmmakers as Orson Welles and Ingmar Bergman, while the famous “Battle on the Ice” has been copied in countless war films. Perhaps most notable is Eisenstein’s ability to build sequences in tandem with the majestic score by Sergei Prokofiev. Their unprecedented collaboration, which continued with Ivan the Terrible, remains a textbook example of a complete fusion of image and music." – Harvard Film Archive

Part of our Sergei Eisenstein season