The Influence of Sergei Eisenstein

I’ve read Tom Clancy’s *Red Storm Rising * and it mentioned **Alexander ** Nevsky. Since I own Prokofiev’s Alexander Nevsky Suite, I went out and rented the movie. I found it enjoyable and seeing the movie added to my enjoyment of Red Storm Rising. As Eisenstein’s Battleship Potemkin has come up in GD, I wonder if other films by Eisenstein are worth seeing? Are they ever shown on TCM or any other cable network?

All are worth seeing. Sometimes they are hard to find. October is the other well known one.

His books, Film Form and Film Sense, are worth reading if you are into Film History - and tend to be taught in most beginning Film Theory courses.

Nevsky is the only one that has a “plot” that’s understandable to most non-artsy types (IMO). Eisenstein’s real influence was in his “montage” style of editing, which, I don’t recall too much of in Nevsky, but in Potemkin, you’ll certainly see. Recall that he was (arguably) making films for peasants who didn’t know too much about history/current events and tried to use some not-quite-subliminal techniques to establish relationships between people/things/events/emotions.

The formal aspects of his work are what is so interesting. He certainly is worth checking out.

Didn’'t Eisenstein do a film based on Ivan the Terrible? Can’t recall the title but I remember some of the plot.

A three parter actually : Ivan the Terrible part I , part II , part III

The few things I remember about Sergei Eisenstein from my film study class in college are. . .
1- He was seminal figure in the early history of the cinema, and his work was as innovative and sophisticated as anyone elses’ at the time. But because he was Russian, his films never received a large audience. He’s known today mostly only to serious film buffs and historians.
2- “Battleship Potempkin” has a famous sequence where a baby carriage rolls down a long stairway. Many, many movies have copied the basic staging of this sequence, from the 1986 version (with Kevin Costner) of “The Untouchables,” to, a bit more removed “Carlito’s Way,” with Al Pacino.

You can read more about him here.

In addition, Disney’s Mulan cribbed from Alexander Nevsky

Lizard writes:

> But because he was Russian, his films never received a large audience. He’s
> known today mostly only to serious film buffs and historians.

Well, no, actually. Compare, say, D. W. Griffith, an American director of the same period. Anyone who’s moderately well read in film history knows who both of them are. To see their films, you would have to see them in a film class or go to one of the few theaters showing classic movies or buy them on videotape or DVD. This isn’t too much different from what you would have to do to see, say, Casablanca, except that the theater showing old films is more likely to show Casablanca and your local video rental place is more likely to have Casablanca on its shelves. If Eisenstein isn’t well known today, it’s more because he worked in the silent film era rather than the fact that he was Russian.