Andrei Rublev (film)


Andrei Rublev (film)

Infobox Film
name = Andrei Rublev
Андрей Рублёв



image_size =
caption =
director = Andrei Tarkovsky
producer = Tamara Ogorodnikova
writer = Andrei Konchalovsky
Andrei Tarkovsky
narrator =
starring = Anatoli Solonitsyn
Ivan Lapikov
Nikolai Grinko
Nikolai Sergeyev
Nikolai Burlyayev
Irma Raush
music = Vyacheslav Ovchinnikov
cinematography = Vadim Yusov
distributor =
released = Start date|1971|12|24
runtime = 205 min. "(original version)"
country = USSR
language = Russian
budget = 1,300,000 rubles
preceded_by =
followed_by =
website =
amg_id = 1:2236
imdb_id = 0060107

"Andrei Rublev" ( _ru. Андрей Рублёв, "Andrey Rublyov"), also known as "The Passion According to Andrei", is a 1966 Russian film directed by Andrei Tarkovsky from a screenplay written by Andrei Konchalovsky and Andrei Tarkovsky. The film is loosely based on the life of Andrei Rublev, the great 15th century Russian icon painter. The film features Anatoly Solonitsyn, Nikolai Grinko, Ivan Lapikov, Nikolai Sergeyev, Nikolai Burlyayev and Tarkovsky's wife Irma Raush.

"Andrei Rublev" is set against the background of 15th century Russia. Although the film is only loosely based on the life of Andrei Rublev, its depiction of medieval Russia is realistic. Tarkovsky created a film that shows the artist as "a world-historic figure" and "Christianity as an axiom of Russia’s historical identity"cite web
last = Hoberman
first = Jim
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = Andrei Rublev
work =
publisher = The Criterion Collection
date =
url = http://www.criterion.com/asp/release.asp?id=34&eid=50&section=essay
format =
doi =
accessdate = 2007-12-06
] during a turbulent period of Russian history, that ultimately resulted in the Tsardom of Russia. The film is about the essence of art and the importance of faith and shows an artist who tries to find the appropriate response to the tragedies of his time. The film is also about artistic freedom and the possibility and necessity of making art for, and in the face of, a repressive authority and its hypocrisy, technology and empiricism, by which knowledge is acquired on one's own without reliance on authority, and the role of the individual, communnity, and government in the making of both spiritual and epic art.

Because of the films's religious themes and political ambiguity, it was unreleased in the atheistic and authoritarian Soviet Union for years after it was completed, except for a single screening in Moscow. A cut version of the film was shown at the Cannes Film Festival in 1969, where it won the FIPRESCI prize. In 1971 a censored version of the film released in the Soviet Union. The film was further cut for commercial reasons upon release in the US in 1973. Because of this several versions of the film exist. Today "Andrei Rublev" is widely regarded as a masterpiece and one of Tarkovsky's best works. [cite web
last = Georgaris
first = Bill
authorlink =
coauthors = Vicki Platt
title = The Top 100 Films
work =
publisher = They Shoot Pictures, Don't They?
date =
url = http://www.theyshootpictures.com/gf1000_top100films26-50.htm
format =
doi =
accessdate = 2007-12-06
]

Plot

:"Note: The following synopsis refers to the original, 205 minutes version of the film."

"Andrei Rublev" is divided into seven chapters and a prologue and an epilogue only loosely related to the main film. The main film charts the life of the great icon painter through several episodes of his life. The background is 15th century Russia, a turbulent period characterized by fighting between rival princes and the Tatar invasions.

The film's prologue shows the preparations for a hot air balloon ride. The balloon takes off from the roof a church, with a man named Yefim (Nikolay Glazkov) roped beneath the balloon, at the very moment of arrival of an ignorant mob trying to thwart the flight. The man is highly delighted by the sight from the air, but can not prevent a crash landing. Yefim is the first of several creative characters, representing the daring escapist, whose hopes are easily crushed.

The Jester, Summer 1400: Andrei (Anatoly Solonitsyn), Danil (Nikolai Grinko) and Kirill (Ivan Lapikov) are wandering monks, looking for work. The three represent different creative characters. Andrei is the observer, a humanistic artist who searches for the good in people and wants to inspire and not frighten. Danil is withdrawn and resigned, and not as bent on creativity as on self-realization. Kirill lacks talent, yet strives to achieve prominence. He is jealous, self-righteous, very intelligent and perceptive. The three have just left the Andronikov Monastery, where they have lived many years, heading to Moscow. During a heavy rain they seek shelter in a barn, where a group of villagers is entertained by a jester (Rolan Bykov). The jester, or skomorokh, is a bitterly sarcastic enemy of the state and the Church, who is earning a living with his scathing and obscene social commentary and by making fun of the Boyars. He ridicules the monks as they come in, and after some time Kirill leaves unnoticed. Shortly, the skomorokh is picked up by a group of soldiers, knocked out headfirst against a tree and taken away.

Theopanes the Greek, Summer-Winter-Spring-Summer 1405-1406: Kirill arrives at the Theophanes the Greek's workshop, where Theophanes the Greek (Nikolai Sergeyev), a prominent and well-recognized master, is working on another of his icons. Theophanes the Greek is portrayed as a complex character: an established artist, humanistic and God-fearing in his views yet somewhat cynical, regarding his art more as a craft and a chore in his disillusion with other people. His young apprentices have all run away to the town square, where a convicted criminal is about to be tortured and executed in public. Kirill talks to Theophanus, and the artist, impressed by his erudition, invites him to work as an apprentice on the decoration of Cathedral of the Annunciation in Moscow. Kirill refuses at first, but then accepts the offer on the only condition that Theophanus will personally come to the Andronikov Monastery and invite Kirill to work with him in view of all the fraternity and Andrei Rublev.

The three monks are back at the Andronikov Monastery. Theophanes the Greek sends a messenger to Andrei to ask him for his assistance in decorating Cathedral of the Annunciation. Both Danil and Kirill are agitated by the recognition Andrei experiences. Danil refuses to accompany Andrei and reproaches him for accepting Theophanes's offer lightly and without considering his fellows, but soon repents of his temper and wishes Andrei well. Kirill is jealous and in great anger, and he leaves the monastery for the secular world, throwing the accusations of greed in the face of the monks. Andrei leaves for Moscow with his young apprentice Foma (Mikhail Kononov). Foma is another creative character, representing the light-hearted and practical-minded commercial artist. Still he seems to be contemplative enough to get along with Andrei.

The Holiday, 1408: During a nightly walk Andrei encounters a group of naked pagans, whose celebration implies sensuality and lust. Andrei feels attracted by the rituals he witnesses. He is caught by the pagans and tied to a cross, and threatened to be drowned in the morning. A woman named Marfa (Nelly Snegina), only dressed with a mantle approaches Andrei. She drops her mantle, kisses and then frees him. The next morning as Andrei leaves a group of soldiers arrives and rounds up the pagans. Marfa tries to escape by running into the river and swimming near Andrei’s boat. He ignores her.

The Last Judgement, Summer 1408: Andrei and Danil are working on the decoration of a church in Vladimir. Over months, work is not progressing, as Andrei is doubting himself. He confides to Danil that his painting disgusts him and that he is unable to paint a subject such as the "Last Judgement", as he doesn’t want to terrify people. He comes to the conclusion that he has lost the ease of mind that an artist needs for his work. He has a flashback during which he remembers his time working for the Grand Prince, who put out the eyes of artisans to prevent them from reproducing their beautiful work for someone else. As the flashback ends, Durochka (Irma Raush), a holy fool or Yurodivy, wanders into the church. Her feeble-mindedness and innocence leads Andrei to the idea to paint a feast.

The Raid, Autumn 1408: While the Grand Prince is away in Lithuania, the Grand Prince’s brother and a group of Tatars raid Vladimir. The invasion and the resulting carnage is shown in great detail. One famous scene shows a horse falling from a flight of stairs and being stabbed by a spear. Another famous scene shows a cow set on fire. The tatars enter the church. Andrei prevents the rape of Durochka by a Russian by slaying the perpetrator. Shaken by this event Andrei falls into self-doubt and decides to give up painting and takes a vow of silence.

The Charity, Winter 1412: Andrei is once again at the Andronikov Monastery. He neither paints nor speaks and keeps Durochka with him. After several years of absence, Kirill shows up at the monastery and asks to be taken in. The father superior allows him to return, but requires him to copy the scriptures fifteen times. One day, Tatars stop at the monastery while traveling through. One of the Tatars takes Durochka away as his eighth wife.

The Bell, Spring-Summer-Winter-Spring 1423-1424: Andrei's life turns around when he witnesses the casting of a bell. As the bellmaker has died, his son Boriska (Nikolai Burlyayev) lies to the men that he knows the secret of casting a bell. Boriska is another creative character. He is aware of his own importance and the difficult task at hand. He is able to create through a combination of natural skill and pure faith. Borsika supervises the digging of the pit, the selection of the clay, the building of the mold, the firing of the furnaces and the hoisting of the bell. Boriska collapses in tears when the bell rings perfectly at the inauguration ceremony. Witnessing the ceremony Andrei breaks his vow of silence and tells the boy that they should go together. "You’ll cast bells. I’ll paint icons."

The epilogue is the only part of the film in color and shows details of several of Andrei Rublev's icons. The icons are shown in the following order: "Enthroned Christ", "Twelve Apostles", "The Annunciation", "Twelve Apostles", "Jesus entering Jerusalem", "Birth of Christ", "Enthroned Christ", "Transfiguration of Jesus", "Resurrection of Lazarus", "The Annunciation", "Resurrection of Lazarus", "Birth of Christ", "Trinity", "Archangel Michael", "Paul the Apostle", "The Redeemer". The final scene crossfades from the icons and shows four horses at a river during rain.

Production

In 1961, while working on his first feature film "Ivan's Childhood", Tarkovsky made a proposal to Mosfilm for a film on the life of Russia's greatest icon painter, Andrei Rublev. The contract was signed in 1962 and the first treatment was approved in December 1963. Tarkovsky and his co-screenwriter Andrei Konchalovsky worked for more than two years on the script, studying medieval writings and chronicles and books on medieval history and art. In April 1964 the script was approved and Tarkovsky began working on the film.cite book
last = Turovskaya
first = Maya
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = Tarkovsky: Cinema as Poetry
publisher = Faber and Faber
date = 1989
location = London
pages =
url =
doi =
id =
isbn = 0571147097
] At the same time the script was published in the influential film magazine "Iskusstvo Kino", and was widely discussed among historians, film critics and ordinary readers. The discussion on "Andrei Rublev" centered on the sociopolitical and historical, and not the artistic aspects of the film.

According to Tarkovsky, the original idea for a film about the life of Andrei Rublev was due to the film actor Vasily Livanov. Livanov proposed to write a screenplay together to Tarkovsky and Konchalovsky while they were strolling through a forest on the outskirts of Moscow. He also mentioned that he would love to play Andrei Rublev. [cite journal
last = Ciwilko
first = Artur
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = Interview Andrzej Tarkowski — o filmie "Rublow"
journal = Ekran
volume = 12
issue =
pages = 11
publisher =
location =
date = 1965
url = http://www.ucalgary.ca/~tstronds/nostalghia.com/TheTopics/On_Rublov.html
doi =
id =
accessdate = 2007-12-09
] Tarkovsky did not intend the film to be a historical or a biographical film about Andrei Rublev. Instead, he was motivated by the idea of showing the connection between a creative character's personality and the times through which he lives. He wanted to show an artist's maturing and the development of his talent. He chose Andrei Rublev for his importance in the history of Russian culture. [cite journal
last = Bachman
first = Gideon
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = Begegnung mit Andrej Tarkowskij
journal = Filmkritik
volume = 12
issue =
pages = 548–552
publisher =
location =
date = 1962
url = http://www.ucalgary.ca/~tstronds/nostalghia.com/TheTopics/On_Rublov.html
doi =
id =
accessdate = 2007-12-09
]

Tarkovsky casted Anatoli Solonitsyn for the role of Andrei Rublev. At this time Solonitsyn was an unknown actor at a theater in Sverdlovsk. According to Tarkovsky everybody has a different image of the historical figure of Andrei Rublev, thus necessitating to take a person not reminding everybody of his roles in other films. Solonitsyn, who had read the film script in the film magazine "Iskusstvo Kino" was very enthusiastic about the role and traveled to Moscow on his own expense and declared that no one could play this role better than him.cite journal
last = Ciment
first = Michel
last2 = Schnitzer
first2 = Luda & Jean
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = Interview L'artiste dans l'ancienne Russe et dans l'URSS nouvelle (Entretien avec Andrei Tarkovsky)
journal = Positif
volume = 109
issue =
pages = 1–13
publisher =
location =
date = October 1969
url = http://www.acs.ucalgary.ca/~tstronds/nostalghia.com/TheTopics/On_Rublov.html
doi =
id =
accessdate = 2007-12-08
] Tarkovsky felt the same as he said that "with Solonitsyn I simply got lucky". For the role of Andrei Rublev he required "a face with great expressive power in which one could see a demoniacal single-mindedness". To Tarkovsky, Solonitsyn provided the right physical appearance and the talent of showing complex psychological processes. [cite journal
last = Veress
first = Jozsef
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = Hüsség a vállalt eszméhez
journal = Filmvilág
volume = 10
issue =
pages = 12–14
publisher =
location =
date = 1969
url = http://www.acs.ucalgary.ca/~tstronds/nostalghia.com/TheTopics/On_Rublov.html
doi =
id =
accessdate = 2007-12-08
]

Tarkovsky chose to shoot the main film in black and white and the epilogue, showing some of Andrei Rublev's icons, in color. In an interview he motivated his choice with the claim that in everyday life one does not consciously notice colors. [cite journal
last = Chugunova
first = Maria
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = On Cinema - Interview with Tarkovsky
journal = To the Screen
volume =
issue =
pages =
publisher =
location =
date = December 1966
url = http://www.acs.ucalgary.ca/~tstronds/nostalghia.com/TheTopics/On_Color.html
doi =
id =
] Consequently Rublev's life is in black and white, whereas his art is in color. The film was thus able express the co-dependence of an artist's art and his personal life. The color sequence of Rublev's icons begins with showing only selected details, climaxing in Rublev's most famous icon, "The Trinity". One reason for including this color final was, according to Tarkovsky, to give the viewer some rest and to allow him to detach himself from Rublev's life and to reflect. The film finally ends with the image of horses at river in the rain. To Tarkovsky horses symbolized life, and including horses in the final scene (and in many other scenes in the film) means that life was the source of all of Rublov's art.cite journal
last = Ciment
first = Michel
last2 = Schnitzer
first2 = Luda & Jean
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = Interview L'artiste dans l'ancienne Russe et dans l'URSS nouvelle (Entretien avec Andrei Tarkovsky)
journal = Positif
volume = 109
issue =
pages = 1–13
publisher =
location =
date = October 1969
url = http://www.acs.ucalgary.ca/~tstronds/nostalghia.com/TheTopics/On_Rublov.html
doi =
id =
accessdate = 2007-12-08
]

Filming did not begin until April 1965, one year after approval of the script.cite book
last = Johnson
first = Vida T.
last2 = Petrie
first2 = Graham
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = The Films of Andrei Tarkovsky: A Visual Fugue
publisher = Indiana University Press
date = 1994
location = Bloomington
pages =
url =
doi =
id =
isbn = 0253331374
] The initial budget was 1.6 million Ruble, but was cut several times to finally one million Ruble (In comparison, Sergei Bondarchuk's "War and Peace" had a budget of eight million Ruble). As a result of the budget restrictions several scenes from the script were cut, including an opening scene showing the Battle of Kulikovo. Other scenes that were cut from the script are a hunting scene, where the younger brother of the Grand Prince hunts swans, and a scene showing peasants helping Duroshka giving birth to her Russian-Tatar child.cite book
last = Johnson
first = Vida T.
last2 = Petrie
first2 = Graham
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = The Films of Andrei Tarkovsky: A Visual Fugue
publisher = Indiana University Press
date = 1994
location = Bloomington
pages =
url =
doi =
id =
isbn = 0253331374
] In the end the film cost 1.3 million Ruble, with the cost overrun due to heavy snowfall, which disrupted shooting from November 1965 until April 1966. The film was shot on location, on the Nerl River and the historical places of Vladimir, Suzdal, Pskov, Izborsk and Pechery.cite journal
last = Lipkov
first = Aleksandr
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = Strasti po Andreiu (Interview with Andrei Tarkovsky on February 1, 1967, transl. by Robert Bird)
journal = Literaturnoe obozrenie
volume =
issue =
pages = 74–80
publisher = 1988
location =
date =
url = http://www.acs.ucalgary.ca/~tstronds/nostalghia.com/TheTopics/PassionacctoAndrei.html
doi =
id =
accessdate = 2007-12-07
]

Several scenes within the film depict violence, torture and cruelty toward animals, leading to controversy and censorship attempts upon completion of the film. Most of these scenes took place during the raid of Vladimir, showing for example the blinding and the torture of a peasant. Most of the scenes involving cruelty toward animals were simulated. For example, during the Tatar raid of Vladimir a cow is set on fire. In reality the cow had an asbestos-covered coat and was not harmed. However, one scene depicts the real death of a horse. The horse falls from a flight of stairs and is then stabbed by a spear. To produce this image, the horse was shot in the neck and pushed from the stairs, then shot in the head afterward. This was done to avoid the possibility of harming a stunt horse. The horse was brought in from a slaughterhouse, killed on set, and then returned to the slaughterhouse for commercial consumption. In a 1967 interview for "Literaturnoe obozrenie", interviewer Aleksandr Lipkov suggested to Tarkovsky that "the cruelty in the film is shown precisely to shock and stun the viewers. And this may even repel them." To this Tarkovsky responded: "No, I don't agree. This does not hinder viewer perception. Moreover we did all this quite sensitively. I can name films that show much more cruel things, compared to which ours looks quite modest."cite journal
last = Lipkov
first = Aleksandr
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = Strasti po Andreiu (Interview with Andrei Tarkovsky on February 1, 1967, transl. by Robert Bird)
journal = Literaturnoe obozrenie
volume =
issue =
pages = 74–80
publisher = 1988
location =
date =
url = http://www.acs.ucalgary.ca/~tstronds/nostalghia.com/TheTopics/PassionacctoAndrei.html
doi =
id =
accessdate = 2007-12-07
]

Distribution

The first cut of the film was completed in July 1966 and was named "The Passion According to Andrei". This cut had a length of approximately 205 minutes. It then took five years for the film to be officially released in a cut version in the Soviet Union. The first, original version of "Andrei Rublev" was criticized by Goskino for its length and explicit depiction of violence.cite book
last = Le Fanu
first = Mark
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = The Cinema of Andrei Tarkovsky
publisher = BFI
date = 1987
location = London
pages =
url =
doi =
id =
isbn = 0851701930
] Demands were made for several cuts, resulting in a film length of 190 minutes. Despite Tarkovsky's objections expressed in a letter to Alexey Romanov, the chairman of Goskino, further cuts were demanded, resulting in a film length of 186 minutes.cite journal
last = Vinokurova
first = Tatyana
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = Khozdenye po mukam Andreya Rublyova
journal = Iskusstvo Kino
volume = 10
issue =
pages = 63–76
publisher =
location = Moscow
date = 1989
url =
doi =
id =
] For film professional the film premiered in the Dom Kino in Moscow in 1966. Audience reaction was enthusiastic, despite some criticism of the film's naturalistic depiction of violence.cite book
last = Turovskaya
first = Maya
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = Tarkovsky: Cinema as Poetry
publisher = Faber and Faber
date = 1989
location = London
pages =
url =
doi =
id =
isbn = 0571147097
] In February 1967 Tarkovsky complained with Alexei Romanov that the film was not yet approved for an official release and refused to cut further scenes from the film.cite journal
last = Vinokurova
first = Tatyana
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = Khozdenye po mukam Andreya Rublyova
journal = Iskusstvo Kino
volume = 10
issue =
pages = 63–76
publisher =
location = Moscow
date = 1989
url =
doi =
id =
] This resulted in "Andrei Rublev" not being released for years, although the film was discussed on the top level of Mosfilm, Goskino and even during a meeting of the Central Committee of the Communist Party.

The film was invited to the Cannes Film Festival in 1967 for a retrospective of Soviet film on occasion of the 50th anniversary of the October Revolution. The official answer was that the film was not yet completed and could not be shown at the film festival. A second invitation was made by the organizers of the Cannes Film Festival in 1969. Soviet officials accepted this invitation and allowed the film shown on the festival out of competition. The audience response was enthusiastic and the film won the FIPRESCI prize. Soviet officials tried to prevent the official release of the film in France and other countries, but were not successful as the distributor had legally acquired the rights in 1969.cite book
last = Le Fanu
first = Mark
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = The Cinema of Andrei Tarkovsky
publisher = BFI
date = 1987
location = London
pages =
url =
doi =
id =
isbn = 0851701930
]

Despite Tarkovsky's refusal to make the demanded cuts, "Andrei Rublev" was finally released on December 24, 1971 in the 186 minutes version of 1967. Reasons for the final release include the pressure of influential admirers of Tarkovsky's work, including the film director Grigori Kozintsev, the composer Dmitri Shostakovich and Yevgeny Surkov, the editor of "Iskusstvo Kino".cite book
last = Johnson
first = Vida T.
last2 = Petrie
first2 = Graham
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = The Films of Andrei Tarkovsky: A Visual Fugue
publisher = Indiana University Press
date = 1994
location = Bloomington
pages =
url =
doi =
id =
isbn = 0253331374
] Tarkovsky and his second wife, Larisa Tarkovskaya wrote letters to influential personalities. Larisa Tarkovskaya even went with the film to Alexey Kosygin, then the Premier of the Soviet Union. As Tarkovsky successfully resisted any further cuts from the 1966 version with a length of 186 minutes, all versions of the film were cut by Tarkovsky and no one else. Although some of the cuts made from the original 205 minutes version were demanded by Goskino, Tarkovsky was in the end convinced that the latest version with a length of 186 minutes was the best and most successful.cite journal
last = Ciment
first = Michel
last2 = Schnitzer
first2 = Luda & Jean
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = Interview L'artiste dans l'ancienne Russe et dans l'URSS nouvelle (Entretien avec Andrei Tarkovsky)
journal = Positif
volume = 109
issue =
pages = 1–13
publisher =
location =
date = October 1969
url = http://www.acs.ucalgary.ca/~tstronds/nostalghia.com/TheTopics/On_Rublov.html
doi =
id =
accessdate = 2007-12-08
] When the film was released Tarkovsky complained in his diary that in the entire city not a single poster for the film could be seen, he also noticed that all theaters were sold out. [cite book
last = Tarkovsky
first = Andrei
authorlink =
coauthors = translated by Kitty Hunter-Blair
title =
publisher = Seagull Books
date = 1991
location = Calcutta
pages =
url =
doi =
id =
isbn = 8170460832
] The film was released in 277 copies and sold 2.98 million tickets. [cite book|last=Zemlianukhin|first=Sergei|coauthors=Miroslava Segida|title=Domashniaia sinemateka 1918–1996 (Домашняя Синематека 1918–1996)|publisher=Duble-D|location=Moscow|date=1996|pages=20|isbn= 5-900902-05-6|language=Russian]

When the film was released in the U.S. and other countries in 1973, the distributor Columbia Pictures cut another twenty minutes from the film. This resulted in a 146 minute version, which made the film an incoherent mess in the eyes of many critics and leading to unfavorable reviews.cite web
last = Hoberman
first = Jim
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = Andrei Rublev
work =
publisher = The Criterion Collection
date =
url = http://www.criterion.com/asp/release.asp?id=34&eid=50&section=essay
format =
doi =
accessdate = 2007-12-06
] Only in 1999 the original, 205 minute version of 1966 was released as part of the Criterion Collection. This version is sometimes also known as the director's cut. According to Tarkovsky's sister, Marina Tarkovskaya, one of the editors of the film, Lyudmila Feiginova, secretly kept a print of the first, original cut in her home, under her bed. [cite web
last = Blasco
first = Gonzalo
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = An Interview with Marina Tarkovskaia and Alexander Gordon
work =
publisher = www.andreitarkovski.org
date = November 10, 2003
url = http://www.ucalgary.ca/~tstronds/nostalghia.com/TheTopics/Marina_and_Alexandr.html
format =
doi =
accessdate = 2007-12-10
]

Awards

"Andrei Rublev" won several awards. In 1969 the film was screened at the Cannes Film Festival. Due to pressure by Soviet officials the film could only be shown out of competition, and was thus not eligible for the Palme d'Or or the Grand Prix. Nevertheless it won the prize of the international film critics, FIPRESCI. In 1971 "Andrei Rublev" won the Critics Award of the French Syndicate of Cinema Critics, and in 1973 the Jussi Award for best foreign film.

Historical accuracy

"Andrei Rublev" was not intended to be an historically accurate biography as little is known about Andrei Rublev. Even what is known about him is obscure and mysterious. This allowed Tarkovsky to construct his story relatively free and to imagine Rublev's biography without violating the historical truth. Moreover, in the film Andrei is shown more as an observer of the events of his time than as an acting person. This is especially evident in the last scene showing the casting of the bell.cite journal
last = Lipkov
first = Aleksandr
authorlink =
coauthors =
title = Strasti po Andreiu (Interview with Andrei Tarkovsky on February 1, 1967, transl. by Robert Bird)
journal = Literaturnoe obozrenie
volume =
issue =
pages = 74–80
publisher = 1988
location =
date =
url = http://www.acs.ucalgary.ca/~tstronds/nostalghia.com/TheTopics/PassionacctoAndrei.html
doi =
id =
accessdate = 2007-12-07
] Tarkovsky indicated some inconsistencies between the history of science and technology and metaphoric elements in his film with devices such as having the hot air ballon being made of both period and obviously modern materials, as hot air ballon technology did not yet exist at the time the film is set in.

Medieval life is shown in great detail and in a naturalistic setting. Tarkovsky and Konchalovsky collected material on medieval history and art, and studied all kind of works on this epoch. They were mostly concerned with representing medieval life and customs and to a lesser extent specific events in a realistic and naturalistic way. Appropriately for a medieval setting, religion takes the center stage, with many references to the Bible and characters discussing issues of religion and the church.

The spoken language is natural and not artificial or scripted. Thus it is rather crude and primitive. All foreign languages, that is Tatar and Italian, are spoken in the original. Tarkovsky’s love of the Renaissance and Italy gets a tongue-in-cheek reference with the presence of Italian ambassadors in the scene showing the casting of the bell.

Historical and Political context, "Andrei Rublev" as political protest and semi-autobiography

Before "Rublev", Tarkovsky made his first feature film, "My Name is Ivan". Tarkovsky made "Ivan" in the social and political context of recent Stalinist purges, followed by Siberian imprisonment for artists who exercised artistic freedom, or freedom of speech. Tarkovsky had included overt political protest in the first instant of "Ivan", where even before the film's first formal image, a coo-coo sound is superimposed over the Mosfilm symbol of the heroically posed communist man and woman with hammer and sickle. Tarkovsky's most important predecessor was director Sergei Eisenstein, who worked with composer Prokofiev. The two made artistic works in constant fear of execution by the paranoid Stalin, if they were to include any remotely “subversive” element. The Soviets were at war with Hitler, so Germanic music was considered subversive, so this meant music must not perceptably be influenced by Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Wagner, etc., a difficult task. After "Rublev", Tarkovsky made "Solaris", which "began"with the Germanic Bach’s most religious work, one of his organ choral preludes, written on his death bed to his God, not for the court.
*Tarkovsky created a "history" for the historical painter Andrei Rublev. Tarkovsky was an artist who made works for the Soviet government, severely hostile to Christianity, and to artistic freedom. "Andrei Rublev" is about an artist, of the same name, who made works for the Christian church. Both Tarkovksy and his protagonists in Rublev made technologically advanced mega art projects within an artistically repressive system, made for the authoritarian repressors, of epic proportion, and requiring huge government subsidy and participation by large numbers of people working for very little. Tarkovsky directed an artistically and technologically advanced epic film with cast of thousands, for the young protagonist in "Rublev", the son of a dead bell maker, directing the epic project of construction of a huge technologically advanced church bell.
* "Rublev" is a film about an artist who took a vow of silence and refused to make art, in protest of a repressive and false government, which literally gouged out the eyes of his artistic predecessor (see Taj Mahal post-construction).
*Candles appear together with bells repeatedly in "Rublev". The pairing is standard iconography for film (see Sight and Sound). In the rotten apples starvation scene, iconic of Soviet corruption, maliscous authoritatian horsemen ride by. Their cinematic image is shown by camera obscura, via a pinhole in the door, mimicing classic images from early zoetropes.
*Tarkovsky squandered massive funds in the making of the film. He had the most expensive actors in the Soviet bloc digging ditches in visual obscurity within in the frame. The excuse was stated by the bell maker’s son, “"the secret of bell making is that the bell maker must dig the ditch"”, a metaphor for the necessity of living life with the common people to understand it. Set in the period in the history of science when epistemology was shifting from total reliance on authority to reliance on experiment and observation, trial and error, the teen learns to make a bell empirically, from the ditch up, with no reliance on knowledge derived from authority. The Kremlin at the time lived in aloof luxury, as well as those in the compliant artistic community not in Siberia. The notable prima donna actors were handed shovels and directed to dig ditches and pits by a teenager. The film ends in with the audience in reflection of the religious beauty of the true historic remnants of images made by Rublev, an audience sitting in positions of genuflection [handout for Pacifica Film Archive 2003 Tarkovsky Festival] [The Solaris Effect: Art and Artifice in Contemporary American Film. University of Texas Press, Austin. 2006 ISBN 0292713444] [``Andrei Rublev``, Robert Bird, British Film Institute Film Classics Series, 2004] Tarkovsky’s other works have more literal autobiographical elements (see related sections in Solaris, Nostalghia, and The Mirror).

ee also

*Middle Ages in film

References

Bibliography

*cite book | last = Bird | first = Robert | title = Andrei Rublev | publisher = British Film Institute | date = 2004 | location = | pages = | url = | isbn = 9781844570386
*cite book | last = Fraser | first = Peter | title = Images of the Passion: The Sacramental Mode in Film | publisher = Greenwood Press | date = 1998 | location = | pages = 35–45 | url = | isbn = 9780275964658
*cite paper | last = Kastinger-Haslinger | first = Michaela | title = Der Film "Andrej Rublëv" von Andrej Tarkovskij | publisher = | date = 1998 | url = http://cinetext.philo.at/magazine/kastinger_haslinger/tarkovskij_da1998.html | format = | accessdate = 2007-12-09 de icon
*cite book | last = Tarkovsky | first = Andrei | title = Andrej Rublev | publisher = Faber and Faber | date = 1991 | location = | pages = | url = | isbn = 9780571163762

External links

*imdb title|id=0060107|title=Andrey Rublyov
*senses|id=cteq/01/15/andrei_rublev|name=Andrei Rublev
* [http://www.criterion.com/asp/release.asp?id=34&eid=50&section=essay Criterion Collection essay by Jim Hoberman]


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  • Andrei Rublev (Film) — Filmdaten Deutscher Titel: Andrej Rubljow Originaltitel: Андрей Рублёв Produktionsland: UdSSR Erscheinungsjahr: 1969 Länge: 185 Minuten Originalsprache: Russisch …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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