Ivan Groznyy [Ivan the Terrible] (1945 and 1958) + ORF Radio-Symphonieorchester and Wiener Singakademie / Frank Strobel

Ivan Groznyy [Ivan the Terrible, Part I] (1945) and Ivan Groznyy. Skaz vtoroy: Boyarskiy zagovor [Ivan the Terrible, Part II: The Boyars’ Plot] (1958)
Director: Sergei M. Eisenstein
Writer: Sergei M. Eisenstein
Cast: Nikolay Cherkasov, Lyudmila Tselikovskaya, Serafima Birman, Mikhail Nazvanov, Mikhail Zharov, Amvrosi Buchma, Mikhail Kuznetsov, Pavel Kadochnikov, Andrei Abrikosov, Aleksandr Mgebrov, Maksim Mikhaylov, Vladimir Balashov, Vsevolod Pudovkin, Semyon Timoshenko, Aleksandr Rumnyov, Pavel Massalsky, Ada Vojtsik, Erik Pyryev
Part of: Film and Music Cycle in the Konzerthaus
With music by Sergey Prokofiev, played be the ORF Radio-Symphonieorchester, sung by the Wiener Singakademie, conducted by Frank Strobel
Seen on: 23.6.2017
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Plot:
In the 16th century, Archduke Ivan (Nikolay Cherkasov) crowns himself Tsar of Russia and sets himself the goal to unite Russia under one rule. Not everybody is taken with his plans and Ivan always has to watch his back – also among the people of his court. There his aunt Efrosinia Staritskaya (Serafima Birman) is plotting against him, hoping to put her own son Dmitri in his place. But also his marriage to Anstasia Romanova (Lyudmila Tselikovskaya) costs him support. But Ivan will do anything to achieve his goals, no matter the cost.

Ivan Groznyy is a monumental two-parter and an absolutely affective and effective piece of propaganda. It’s worth seeing – especially on the big screen, when you got a huge orchestra and choir on stage to (under)score it. The film is too big to do anything on a small scale.

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The Trollenberg Terror (1958)

The Trollenberg Terror aka The Crawling Eye
Director: Quentin Lawrence
Writer: Jimmy Sangster
Based on: The Trollenberg Terror TV show
Cast: Forrest Tucker, Laurence Payne, Jennifer Jayne, Janet Munro, Warren Mitchell
Part of: Viennale

Plot:
Alan Brooks (Forrest Tucker) meets two young women – Ann (Janet Munro) and Sarah Pilgrim (Jennifer Jayne) – on the train through Switzerland. The two sisters are a psychic act and as they approach Alan’s destination, Sarah feels that they need to get off there, too and convinces Ann. So the three of them check into the local hotel in Trollenberg. But Alan has come for a specific reason: there have been reports of climbers disappearing in the mountains and generally weird occurences – and it’s not the first time that Alan has come into contact with them.

The Trollenberg Terror is a pretty damn awesome film. It’s fun, has pretty good special effects and it really evokes the 50s. I enjoyed the hell out of it.

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