Carnival Night / Hakob Hovnatanyan review – a pair of pre-Christmas Soviet treats

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A nimble 1950s Russian musical comedy is coupled with a restored 1967 short by the Armenian director of The Colour of Pomegranates

In 1956, the Soviet Union having passed from Stalinist terror to Khrushchevian unease, the state cinema industry produced one of the most commercially successful films in its history: a musical comedy called Carnival Night, the debut feature from Eldar Ryazanov, previously a documentary-maker.

It is as light and nimble as a racehorse jockey – a little miracle of innocence, gaiety, mischief and fun, proof that Soviet cinema could do musicals to be compared to Hollywood’s MGM greats, in spirit, if not exactly in budget. Ryazanov went on to be renowned for slyly satirising the grisliness of apparatchiks and officials, and Carnival Night is surely an influence on Miloš Forman’s The Firemen’s Ball.

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Source: russia
Link : Carnival Night / Hakob Hovnatanyan review – a pair of pre-Christmas Soviet treats

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