SVETLANA Y. SHCHEBROVA,
A.I. Herzen Russian State Pedagogical University of Russia,
Institute of Human Philosophy, St. Petersburg, Russia
THE DEMOGRAPHIC DEADLOCK OF THE “BRIGHT PATH”: ABOUT THE DIRECTION OF CINEMATOGRAPHY DURING THE SOVIET PERIOD
Abstract. The article examines the stages of development of Soviet cinematography between the 1920s and the 1980s. The art of the cinema, on the one hand, fixated various phenomena arising in the Russian space and in the Soviet social system and, on the other hand, followed the orders of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, which guided the work of cinematographers. In every decade of the Soviet era there were films made in which the directors tried to reconcile together the imperatives of party ideologists with the realities of life. The 1920s were a time of search for subject matter corresponding to the revolutionary time, the time of the creation of the classical films pertaining to the aesthetics of socialist realism («The Industrial Protest» and «Battleship Potemkin») were created. Since within the Soviet film distribution movies about the revolution and its heroes were not in demand, in the 1930s the search for plots and images of Soviet cinematography were continued. The creative absorption of the folklore code made it possible for the Soviet cinema of the 1930s not merely to win the greatest amount of audience, but to become a truly popular art, which was veritably on demand. However, the range of feelings the heroes of the Soviet screen were permitted to express was extremely dosed and limited:
To love the party, the proletariat, the teachings of Marxism-Leninism, and to hate ardently the enemies of the party and the revolution. Consequently, the Soviet era is characterized by movies in which the main protagonists sacrifice their personal lives for the public life. Screenwriters, directors and actors were forced to make impossible efforts to combine interesting subject matter with the demands of the Party. At the same time, before the beginning of Perestroika the theme of love and family life was strictly limited, since priority was given to the subjects of great industrial production achievements. Whether willingly or unwittingly, but it was cinematography which fixated the demographic problems arising in Soviet society, which gradually built up and stipulated the processes of Perestroika in the late 1980s.
Keywords: Cinema, Communist Party of the Soviet Union, demographics, mythology, ideology, rebuilding, family.