Larisa SHEPITKO
Лариса ШЕПИТЬКО
Larissa CHEPITKO
USSR, 1967, 38mn 
Black and white, fiction
Rodina elektrichestva
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Родина электричества

 

 The Onset Of An Unknown Age, 2nd novella: 'The Homeland of Electricity'

 Le Pays de l'électricité

Russian subtitle : Начало неведомого века (début d'un siècle inconnu)
 
Directed by : Larisa SHEPITKO (Лариса ШЕПИТЬКО)
Writing credits : Larisa SHEPITKO (Лариса ШЕПИТЬКО)
Based on Andrey Platonov's story
 
Cast
Yevgeni GORYUNOV (Евгений ГОРЮНОВ)
Sergey GORBATYUK (Сергей ГОРБАТЮК)
Aleksandra POPOVA (Александра ПОПОВА)
Fyodor GLADKOV (Федор ГЛАДКОВ)
Viktor KONDRATYUK (Виктор КОНДРАТЮК)
 
Production design : Valentin KONOVALOV (Валентин КОНОВАЛОВ), Valery KOSTRIN (Валерий КОСТРИН)
Music : Roman LEDENEV (Роман ЛЕДЕНЕВ)
Companies : Mosfilm, Studio Dovzhenko, ETK
Release Date in Russia : 07/11/1987
 
Site : Page sur IMDb

Plot synopsis
Based on A. Platonov’s story. Everybody in the village was waiting for electrician Grinya and he came. However, the electric motor burnt out and citizens lost their hope but decided to work better. Grinya tries to help citizens of the village.
Source : www.mosfilm.ru
 

commentaries
FILM Review: The Homeland of Electricity by Larisa SHEPITKO, Keith UHLICH, www.slantmagazine.com, 2006
The Homeland of Electricity 1967 ‘Rodina electrichestva’ Directed by Larisa Shepitko, Sally Jane Black, letterboxd.com,
 
This film is part of a diptych called The Beginning of an Unknown Century with the film The Angel by Andrey SMIRNOV

Originally, The Beginning of an Unknown Century was conceived as a series celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of the Revolution. Three medium-length films by three young directors, Larissa Chepitko, Andrey Smirnov and Guenrikh Gabay, adapting three great Russian writers. But censorship will dismantle the film: the segment of Gabai will be broadcast on television, while those of Chepitko and Smirnov will be banned. The latter were inspired by Andrei Platonov and Yuri Olecha, two authors banned from writing under Stalin. No doubt their vision of the Revolution was too harsh in the eyes of those in power.

What remains of this essay of high level experimental production therefore becomes, twenty years later, a diptych. For his segment The Homeland of Electricity , Larissa Chepitko recounts the hard work, tireless efforts of a revolutionary technician who wishes to bring electricity and water to his arid village. The lyricism of the subject is supported by black and white images, where white, more than bright, becomes as hot as the earth it describes. The Beginning of an unknown century is a rarity within an unknown filmography.

Selected in the following festivals :
- Programme 2019-2020 organisé par la Sorbonne : films tabous et interdits en URSS, Paris (France), 2019
- Institut Lumière - Hommage à Larissa Chepitko, Lyon (France), 2015
- Gels et dégels, une autre histoire du cinéma soviétique (1926-1968), Paris (France), 2002

Images
 

Larisa Shepitko's The Homeland of Electricity from The Eclipse Viewer on Vimeo.