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This book is a pathbreaking study of the 'unknown' Soviet cinema: the popular movies which were central to Soviet film production in the 1920s. Professor Youngblood discusses acting genres, the cinema stars, audiences, and the influences of foreign films and examines three leading filmmakers - Iakov Protazanov, Boris Barnet, and Fridikh Ermler. She also looks at the governmental and industrial circumstances underlying filmmaking practices of the era, and provides an invaluable survey of the contemporary debates concerning official policy on entertainment cinema. Professor Youngblood demonstrates that the film culture of the 1920s was predominantly and aggressively 'bourgeois' and enjoyed patronage that cut across class lines and political allegiance. Thus, she argues, the extent to which Western and pre-revolutionary influences, boureois directors and middle-class tastes dominated the film world is as important as the tradition of revolutionary utopianism in understanding the transformation of Soviet culture in the Stalin revolution.
Cambridge University Press
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