Synopsis by Nathan Southern
As co-directed by Fedor Ozep and Boris Barnet, the 1926 Russian silent picture Miss Mend (also known as The Adventures of the Three Reporters) constitutes an epic-length saga adapted from a 1923 pulp novel. The original work credits the author as an American, "Jim Dollar" though this was actually a pseudonym for a Russian woman, Marietta Shaginian). The film embodied a local response against the experimental cinema of Soviet directors such as Sergei Eisenstein and Dziga Vertov, and an attempt to emulate fast-paced American serials featuring such stars as Douglas Fairbanks, Sr. and Pearl White. The story, partially set in an imagined America dominated by cutting-edge technology and new social structures, comments on such issues as wealth, violence, racism and rape, in its tale of Vivian Mend, an urban professional who earns a living and raises her only child sans the help of any man, and three reporters who attempt to stop a biological attack on the U.S.S.R. by several unsavory Western industrialists. This set contains the surviving four hours of footage from the original serial, newly remastered and restored by David Shepard.