Sergei Yutkevich



6.8 Lace (1928)
6.5 New Adventures of Schweik (1943)
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Sergei Yutkevich (or Sergej Jutkevic) cut his teeth in puppet theater and learned acting skills from Vsevolod Meyerhold. A co-founder of FEKS, and a diligent implementer of its "eccentric" dogma in the short Radiodetektiv/ The Radio Detective (1926), but then also a set designer for Abram Room in 1926-27, and a firm believer in revolutionary culture, he directed movies that were multiple manifestations of the revolutionary hero, whether an ordinary worker, for example in Kruzheva/ Lace (1928), set in a textile factory, or a soldier.

He made two films enhanced by Shostakovich scores: Zlatye Gory/ Golden Mountains (1931), set in a factory during a strike, and Vstrechnyj / Shame/ Counterplan (1932), co-directed with Friedrich Ermler.

He directed the comedy Skakhtery/ Miners (1937); the historical drama Chelovek s Ruzhjom/ The Man with the Gun (1938), about Lenin's 1917 revolution, the biopic Jakov Sverdlov/ The First President (1940), about a Soviet hero; the anti-Nazi satire Shweik Gotovitsya k Boyu/ Schweik Preparing for Battle (1942), a short, and its follow-up feature-length Novye Pokhozhdeniya Shveyka/ New Adventures of Schweik (1943), which capulted the anti-hero of Jaroslav Hasek's novel "The Good Soldier Svejk" into World War II; Svet nad Rossiei/ Light over Russia (1947, never released and lost), an adaptation of Nikolai Pogodinís novel "Kremlevskie Kuranty/ Kremlin Bells"; Velikij voin Albanii Skanderbeg/ Knights of the Mountains (1953); and Othello (1956) from Shakespeare.

His movies were generally more jovial than the average, inspired by Hollywood's farces, but also devoted to document ordinary lives.

During the age of socialist realism, Yutkevich turned to dogmatic celebrations but without abandoning the knack for farcical humor, as proven by Novye Pohozhdenija Shvejka/ The New Adventures of Svejk (1943), nor the passion for puppets, as in Banja/ Bath (1962), co-directed with Anatoly Karanowitsch.

He wasted his talent in three films on Lenin: Rasskazy o Lenine/ Tales of Lenin (1957), Lenin v Polshe/ Lenin in Poland (1966) and Lenin v Parizhe/ Lenin in Paris (1981).

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