Screen Metamorphoses of Ivan Pyryev

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Ivan Aleksandrovich Pyryev passed away fifty years ago. However, for all these years he did not become a purely “historical” figure, his films have not gone into “nothingness”, disputes about his personality and creation have not ceased. The director, screenwriter, organizer of film production, he left a rich creative heritage. Having not received a special education and actually a dilettante in art, Pyryev, nevertheless, for half a century of work in the cinema has reached the highest professionalism, having traveled from the actor and the assistant to the screenwriter, helmer, director of Mosfilm, initiator and the first head of the Union of Filmmakers of the USSR. Ivan Pyryev's creation is known to many millions of viewers of different generations for those lyrical, musical comedies with which the heyday of Soviet cinema of the socialist realism period is identified: The Country Bride, Tractor Drivers, They Met in Moscow, Symphony of Life, Cossacks of the Kuban. Analyzing the era of the “Stalin Renaissance”, it should be noted that Pyryev filmed, in fact, always in demand, a movie about the struggle between good and evil, about the desire of heroes to go through any obstacles to reach happiness. And this means that I.A. Pyryev created genuinely “national films” in the 1930s and 1940s. These same tendencies became the basis of the pictures set by him during the Great Patriotic War, the heroic drama Secretary of the Communist Party District Committee and the lyrical comedy Six O'Clock in the Evening After the War, each of which inspired the audience with faith in victory and gave hope for happiness. The appeal of Pyryev in the late 1950s to the adaptation of F.M. Dostoevsky was unexpected and paradoxical. The explanation here is one: the turbulent, reeking talent of the artist pushed him to new creative searches in order to escape from stereotypes of the “Soviet” theme. His best screen interpretations of Dostoevsky's novels are the films Idiot and The Brothers Karamazov. Not all succeeded Pyryev’s screen reading of the most complicated works of Russian literature was not absolutely efficient. However, he did a lot to passionately, persuasively and passionately told about the tragic fate not only of Dostoevsky's heroes, but of Russia itself. He created films about love, its immense power, condemning nihilism, cynicism and lack of spirituality. That is why the phenomenon of Pyryev, as a unique phenomenon of domestic cinema, remains an object of close attention and research of modern film studies.

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Kirillova Natalia B

Doctor of Cultural Studies, Professor, Chair of Cultural Studies and Socio-Cultural Activity, Ural Federal University.

Ural Federal University named after the first President of Russia B. N. Yeltsin
, Yekaterinburg

Author for correspondence.


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