Abstract

ABSTRACT:

This article addresses a persistent feature of Soviet cinema: plotlessness, or unstructured storytelling. I examine the phenomenon of plotlessness, its history, and its causes during the Stalin period to show, contrary to conventional wisdom, that many Stalin-era films were not classically constructed. Plotlessness resulted from an aborted transition to conventional storytelling in the mid-1930s when theme replaced story as the driving force behind narratives. This development required that Stalin-era filmmakers continue to experiment with plotting. The approach to storytelling they created was not only distinct from the historical-materialist mode practiced under Soviet montage but also an independent alternative to classicism.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1553-3905
Print ISSN
0892-2160
Pages
pp. 169-192
Launched on MUSE
2017-11-18
Open Access
No
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