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Aelita: Queen of Mars Movie Review

zsa nikolai yuri illinski

Okay, so this is no Fritz Lang masterpiece, but for science-fiction buffs, it's a genuinely intriguing curiosity. Made the year that Lenin died and Stalin took over, it looks like the production team had fun with this one, especially the three art directors and the costume designer. Even then, was anyone taking the script all that seriously? For instance, who gets to go to Mars? One inventor (of course), one soldier (why?), and one police informer (that would be Igor Illinski and he is SUCH a ham!). So they get to Mars and guess what they find there? (See alternative title.) That's right, boys, it's Yet Another Revolution, dang it! (Gee, we thought we applied for this job to get away from all that.) Queen Aelita is something to see, alright. Some stills of the Martian sets and fashions must have slipped over to the U.S. of A. at some point, because our action-packed serials clearly received inspiration from somewhere for those pace-setting styles (I wonder if Ed Bernds and Zsa Zsa Gabor got a good look at Aelita before they made Queen of Outer Space). Aelita isn't camp yet, not really, but naive perhaps, and a little giddy. Based on Alexei Tolstoy's play. AKA: Aelita: The Revolt of the Robots.

1924 113m/B RU Yulia Solntseva, Nikolai Batalov, Igor Illinski, Nikolai Tseretelli, Vera Orlova, Pavel Poi, Konstantin Eggert, Yuri Zavadski, Valentina Kuindzi, N. Tretyakova; D: Yakov Protazanov; W: Fedor Ozep, Aleksey Fajko; C: Yuri Zhelyabuzhsky, Emil Schoene-mann. VHS, LV

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