Battleship Potemkin
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After the success of Strike (1924), Sergei Eisenstein was commissioned by the Soviet government to make a film commemorating the uprising of 1905. Eisenstein's scenario, boiled down from what was to have been a multipart epic of the occasion, focussed on the crew of the battleship Potemkin. Fed up with the extreme cruelties of their officers and their maggot-ridden meat rations, the sailors stage a violent mutiny. This, in turn, sparks an abortive citizens' revolt against the Czarist regime. The film's centerpiece is staged on the Odessa Steps, where in 1905 the Czar's Cossacks… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"The most brilliant of all Soviet silent films."
‑ Michael Wilmington, Chicago Tribune
"For all Potemkin's rabble-rousing propaganda, Eisenstein's aestheticism is everywhere apparent."
‑ J. Hoberman, Village Voice
"Potemkin is a vital viewing experience that transcends its landmark/milestone status."
‑ Philip French, Guardian
"Who needs Avatar in 3D when you can have this?"
‑ Derek Malcolm, This is London
"Battleship Potemkin is agitprop, but cinematically magnificent agitprop..."
‑ Sean Axmaker, Turner Classic Movies Online
"The cinema's first modernist... was the Soviet director Sergei Eisenstein. As his most famous work, Battleship Potemkin, from 1925, shows, his analytical, quasi-scientific methods bore the mark of both aesthetic and political upheavals."
‑ Richard Brody, New Yorker
"It is a knockout."
‑ Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times
"Eisenstein's film still has a hypnotic urgency."
‑ Peter Bradshaw, Guardian
"Nearly 90 years on, Eisenstein's masterpiece is still guaranteed to get the pulse racing."
‑ Sam Wigley, Total Film
"Eisenstein proved himself to be the first of what would become a familiar filmmaking type: the entertainer/sadist."
‑ Josh Larsen, LarsenOnFilm
"The director displays a vivid imagination and an artistic appreciation of motion picture values."
‑ Mordaunt Hall, New York Times
"A work of straightforward emotion and pulse-quickening tension."
‑ Andrew O'Hehir,
"Don't be put off by its highbrow reputation, this is essential cinema."
‑ David Parkinson, Radio Times
"Sergei Eisenstein's masterpiece is a persistently political work salvaged by its unforgettable grasp of motion."
‑ Jesse Cataldo, Slant Magazine
"Packs so much eye-and-heart power that its abrupt ending seems to come hard on the opening rather than an hour-and-a-third later."
‑ Donald J. Levit, ReelTalk Movie Reviews
More reviews for Battleship Potemkin on Rotten Tomatoes