Thursday, 26 March 2015

October 1917 - Ten Days That Shook The World.

Produced in 1927 by a group of Soviet filmmakers led by Sergei Eisenstein for the tenth anniversary of the October Revolution this film recreates the events of October 1917 with the greatest possible realism. Many participants of the revolution: Red Guards, soldiers and sailors appear in the film, among them is Nikola Podvolsky one of the leaders of the armed uprising. When the film was made Leningrad and its streets, the buildings, the Winter Palace, the Corridors of the Smolny were the same as in that fateful year. Thus October 1917 renders a stirring eyewitness account of the early days of the revolution.
The February Revolution.
A masterpiece created by one of the world’s greatest film directors, it is in fact a welcome gift to film viewers. The original movie premiered in the era of the silent screen. Eisenstein’s associate Grigory Alexandrov made the sound version.  The music is by Dmitri Shostakovich and the film was dedicated to the Petrograd Proletariat heroes of the October Revolution. The October Revolution Jubilee Committee, Chairman Nikolai Podvolsky, commissioned it. The screenplay was by Eisenstein and Alexandrov.   
Lenin addresses the crowd....
“We have the right to be proud that to us fell the good fortune of beginning the building of the Soviet State and by doing so opening a new chapter in the history of the world”[1] great effect. 
This movie is an example how working people can rise up and assert themselves forming a new Socialist State, destroying the authoritarian fascists and there like. Where all people are free, no matter what colour or religion, from racialist and bigoted demagogues. The means of production is put well and truly back in the hands of the proletariat who will no longer have be wage slaves to make the rich richer but able to provide themselves and their families with a good standard of living, a warm place to live and the feeling of security.

The Background.[2]

The 1917 Russian Revolution had two distinct phases. The revolution in February was the product of discontent with the conduct of war and the overthrew of the Russian Tsardom. Resulting liberalism enabled preparation for the second revolution in "October", which exploited war weariness in the interests of the international revolutionary doctrines of Marxism. The Bolshevik party that consisted of Lenin and other leaders had been consistently against war, and we're abroad formulating their own revolution at the time of the February revolt.

Lenin immediately took the view that the Soviets support of the bourgeois revolution had been overtaken by events, and that the time was ripe for a proletarian revolution in Russia, as a signal for a worldwide socialist revolution. The Bolsheviks, declaring members of the central executive committee traitors to the revolution, openly worked for their overthrow and of the bourgeois government. At the time of the October revolution, real authority was held by the Soviets in the capitals and provisional towns, who openly defied the government, while various nationalities began to secede from the state, forming their own national armies to defend their newly created frontiers and national flags.

The whole country was in a state of feverish unrest, which soon developed into riots and anarchy. Most destructive were the peasants who began expropriating the land, driving off cattle, burning farms, demolishing forests and agricultural equipment, and capturing, torturing and murdering landowners. On October 20th, a body known as the "pre-parliament" was constituted in Petrograd, following which leaders of the Soviet constituted a military revolutionary committee and declared it the highest military authority in the capital and province of Petrogad.

The Bolshevik Revolution was inseparably connected with the convocation of the second Congress of Soviets. Trotsky demanded that the military revolutionary committee countersigned all general staff orders. This was rejected, whereby a resolution was passed by delegates representing all troops, refusing to obey commands of the general staff and recognizing the central executive committee as the sole organ of power. An ultimatum was issued to the committee to withdraw this resolution. This ultimatum was ignored, thereby forcing counter active measures such as raising the bridges to cut off any communications between the left and right banks of the Neva. Only when government ministers established at the Winter Palace learned that the guns of the cruiser "Aurora" and the Peter and Paul fortress were trained on them, did they decide to surrender to the revolutionaries. In the support of the day, Trotsky declared: we hoped to establish a compromise without bloodshed. But now blood has been shed, there is only one way left, a ruthless fight. With these words Trotsky proclaimed the approaching civil war, and as the Petrogad revolution swept Russia, the new Bolshevik regime was for now, immune from military menace.

[1] Vladimir IIyich Ulyanov (Lenin)
[2] Notes provided on the DVD.

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