Uchitel (1939)

Genres - Comedy, Romance  |   Run Time - 85 min.  |   Countries - Russia, USSR  |  
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Original released in 1939 as Uchitel, The New Teacher was the third of Sergei Gerasimov's trilogy of tributes to the "new generation" of working Soviets. Boris Chirkov heads the cast as Stephan Lautin, a country boy who seeks out success in the Big City. Through pluck and luck, Lautin realizes his goal, only to give it all up to return to his home village, there to apply the life lessons he's learned as a provincial schoolteacher. The film's most fascinating character is Lautin's sweetheart Agrafena (Tamara Makarova), a vacillating vixen who changes moods as often as she changes her hairstyle. Not as propagandistic as Gerasimov's previous films, The New Teacher was hailed as the director's most heartfelt project. Unfortunately, he quickly returned to pro-Communist dogma, later dismissing New Teacher as being a slick but unimportant trifle.

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Keywords

forbidden-love, marriage, peasant, poverty, rags-to-riches, romance