sexta-feira, 2 de março de 2012

LADY MACBETH SIBERIANA, Diretor: Andrzev Wajda, cinema polonês (Adaptação do livro de Leskov)

Siberian Lady Macbeth

The Movie:

A lethal lady falls in with a mysterious drifter. As more of her family finds out, she takes steps to bump them off rather than admit anything. That's the premise of Siberian Lady Macbeth (Sibirska Ledi Magbet), Andrzej Wajda's film from 1962, written by Sveta Lukic from a novella by N. S. Ljeskov entitled Lady Macbeth of Mzensk District. Wajda is of course the Polish director of Ashes and Diamonds, Man of Iron, and Danton. Wajda filmed the movie in Yugoslavia, for some reason, but it feels very Russian, especially thanks to the ziggurats sometimes seen in the background. Ljuba Tadic plays Katerina, the bored wife of a stolid peasant. Olivera Markovic is Sergei, the wanderer who comes to town and creates problems, or at least brings out the worst in Katerina. To stay with him (why?) she embarks on a series of crimes. When they are caught out, they are banished to Siberia, where Sergei falls in with another woman. Katerina drags her rival to the Volga and drowns both her and herself. Siberian Lady Macbeth proves to be a rather slow paced film, that takes achingly long to reach its plot points. It is more interested in the dirt and livestock of peasant life, of rituals and passions, than in advancing the narrative. Most European films of this time period are allegories for the harshness of Soviet rule, but it's hard to glean what this film is really about beneath its surface. There is a streak of misogyny in Wajda's work, and Siberian Lady Macbeth may be an expression of that strain, rather than a covert political statement.

VIDEO: Kino offers a Siberian Lady Macbeth derived from a scratchy, dirty print that also has a lot of flicker in it. It's a black and white movie, in widescreen format (2.35:1), and despite the problems with the source print, it has vibrant whites and rich blacks. For the most part, it's a beautifully composed frame, by cinematographer Aleksandar Sekulovic.
SOUND: The Dolby Digital two channel mono track is fairly scratchy, even shrill at times, which does a disservice to Dusan Radic's lively score, derived from Dmitri Shostakovich.
MENUS: A static, silent menu offers 15 chapter scene selection for the 93 minute movie.
PACKAGING: A keep case also contains a one sheet chapter guide. The packaging utilizes stills from the film, not the poster, for illustrations.
EXTRAS: Zero supplements.

Final Thoughts: Siberian Lady Macbeth is a rather minor film from a major director, but its still good to have a hard to find Eastern European film available on disc, despite problems with the source print.

Andrezj Wajda was in an efervescent state of mind and besides he was in the peak of his artistic powers when he decided to adapt this Shakespeare classic . Only several years before the director Akira Kurosawa had released the Japanese version (Throne of Blood) of Shakespeare's Lady Macbeth, Andrzej Wajda, for his first project outside of Poland, directed Siberska Ledi Magbet/Siberian Lady Macbeth.

This particular version of four hands versions was based on the 1865 novel Ledi Makbet Mtsenkogo Uyezda/Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District by Nicolai Leskov and Dmitri Shostakovich's 1934 opera Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk (also based on Leskov's work).

Wajda once more shows his enormous genius employing clever metaphors to illustrate more than a simple coincidence ; the presented dramatis personae with the opressiveand struggling situation in his beloved Poland .

Beware the Hungary invasion was very fresh in the mind of the world and the iron circle after Stalin death became in a sinister and invisible cloud surrounding all the possible stages . The music , litherature , painting suffered a crude isolating state .

Fortunately , the sixties signified a real breakthrough with the ancients state of things all around the world and this fact affected too the world behind the iron curtain . Poland was always le enfant terrible for the rest of the satellite countries of USSR.

Using the composer's music for the background, this crude tale was set in Yugoslavia during Czarist Russia. As you see Wajda avoids to establish a direct similarity with the real world . Left at home with her father in law when her husband is away on a prolonged trip, Katerina takes up with peasant workman Sergei. You will suposse what's going on . But the unthruth has short legs and her father in law discovers the affair and Katerina, with the help of her lover, poisons him. When her husband finally returns home, Katerina has fatal plans for him as well. As usual, Wajda aims for symbolic reflection; in this instance, the themes are of retribution and exile. And remind this hell atmosphere you had felt before in the Mahlerian Universe . It may be interesting to note that when Shostakovich wrote his opera, it was suppressed in the Soviet Union until one year before the release of this film, revived under the title, Katerina Izmaylova.

If you are looking for an incisive , crew and merciless reading of the Macbeth legend in the middle of the inmense Soviet landscape and besides to inmerse in the Russian mood with all its charm and horror , watch this jewel film .

A glorious masterpiece .

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