Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Commissar (Комиссар) is a movie is based on one of Vassily Grossman's first short stories, In the town of Berdichev (В городе Бердичеве).
Maxim Gorky considered this four-page story one of the best about the Russian Civil War and encouraged Grossman to dedicate himself to literature. It also drew favorable attention from Mikhail Bulgakov.
History of the film
The movie's fate was tragic. It was shot in 1967 in the post-"Khrushchev Thaw" USSR, when the official policy of anti-Zionism was bordering on anti-Semitism. After making this movie, Askoldov lost his job, was expelled from the Communist Party, charged with social parasitism and exiled from Moscow, and banned from working on feature films for life. Mordyukova and Bykov, major Soviet movie stars, had to plead with the authorities to spare him of bigger charges. The film was shelved by the KGB for twenty years.
It was released only in the late 1980s due to glasnost policies, when the collapse of the Soviet regime was imminent. The movie won the special prize of the jury and the Silver Bear at the Berlinale 1988 and other awards.
- During the Russian Civil War, a pregnant female-commissar of the Red Army cavalry must give birth and is forced to stay with the family of a poor Jewish tailor, his wife and six children...
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