Battleship Potemkin

Wed 19 January 2005 // 20:00

(Eisenstein / 1926 / 66 mins / Russia / cert PG)

2005 marks the centenary of the first Russian Revolution against tsarism in 1905. In the events of that year the Russian workers developed many of the politics and strategies they would use 12 years later. In particular they organised the first Soviets- as structures of direct workers democracy. Additionally, the absence of a main character, except that of the collective Russian people, corresponds to the Marxist principles of the film.

Sergei Eisenstein's 1926 film of these events features frequently in lists of the top 5 films ever made. Considered to be the greatest example of Eisenstein's theory of 'montage', it features the often referenced but never bettered Odessa Steps sequence. The various disconcerting jump cuts convey the chaotic terror of the situation, as does the rapid editing of the entire sequence.

Chris Harman will give an introductory talk on the background to the politics and history of the revolution before the feature,