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Zvenigora poster.jpg
Film poster
Directed by Alexander Dovzhenko
Written by Maike "Mike" Johansen
Yurtyk (Yuri Tiutiunnyk)
Alexander Dovzhenko
Starring Semyon Svashenko
Nikolai Nademsky
Georgi Astafyev
Les Podorozhnij
Cinematography Boris Zavelev
Edited by Alexander Dovzhenko
Distributed by Mosfilm
Release dates
  • April 13, 1928 (1928-04-13)
Running time
91 min.
Country Soviet Union
Language silent film
Russian intertitles

Zvenigora (Russian: Звeнигopа) is a 1928 Soviet silent film by Ukrainian director Alexander Dovzhenko, first shown on April 13, 1928.[1] This was the fourth film by Dovzhenko, but the first one which was widely noticed and discussed in the media. This was also the last film by Dovzhenko where he was not the sole scriptwriter. The script was originally written by Maike "Mike" Johansen and Yurtyk (Yuri Tiutiunnyk), however, eventually, Dovzhenko strongly modified the script himself and took the names of Johansen and Tyutyunnyk off the film.[1]

Regarded as a silent revolutionary epic, Dovzhenko's initial film in his "Ukraine Trilogy" (along with Arsenal and Earth) is almost religious in its tone, relating a millennium of Ukrainian history through the story of an old man who tells his grandson about a treasure buried in a mountain. The film mixes fiction and reality. Although Dovzhenko referred to Zvenigora as his "party membership card".[1] Relationship between an individual and the nature is the main theme of the film, which is highly atypical of the Soviet cinema of the end of the 1920s, mostly influenced by the avant-garde. Dovzhenko states that full submission made the humankind forceless in front of the nature, and understanding of the nature is required to make progress. For him, the October Revolution carries such understanding.[2]

At the time of release, the film was noticed by the media, but generally regarded as not conforming with the Soviet style aesthetics. In 1927, even before the release, the Kino newspaper sharply criticized the screenplay calling it "bourgeoise" and "nationalistic".[1]


  1. ^ a b c d Маевская, Тереза (April 13, 2011). "Звенигора, ставшая Голгофой для Александра Довженко". Комментарии. Retrieved 20 July 2013. 
  2. ^ Довженко Александр Петрович (in Russian). Кирилл и Мефодий. Retrieved 21 July 2013. 

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