Thursday, December 24, 2015

Вечера́ на ху́торе близ Дика́ньки (Evenings on a Farm near Dikanka)

Aleksandr Rou, Moscow 1961

Though based on the same short story by Nikolai Gogol as Starewicz’s Christmas Eve, because it draws as well on some material from other stories in Gogol’s first published collection of folk tales, this later film is given the title of the complete book.  It’s the story of a witch’s son, the village blacksmith, who manages to catch one of his mother’s lovers, the Devil, in a sack and later by the tail and ride on his back to St Petersburg, at the behest of his betroathed, to fetch a pair of the Tsarina Catherine’s slippers.  It all takes place on Christmas Eve and is mostly set in the small Ukrainian village of Dikanka.

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