COSMIC JOURNEY (1936)
aka KOSMICHESKIY REYS: FANTASTICHESKAYA NOVELLA, THE SPACE SHIP
Article 1989 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 8-25-2006
Posting Date: 1-22-2007
Directed by Vasili Zhuravlyov
Featuring Sergei Komarov, K. Moskalenko, Vassili Gaponenko
A man, a woman, and a young boy go to the moon in a rocket ship.
Though IMDB says this Russian science fiction epic is not a silent, my copy has only music and title cards to help me along. Unfortunately, the title cards are in Russian, so this not only leaves me in the dark about some of the plot elements, but I also have no idea how to pronounce what I do see. Still, I think the only thing I’m missing is a few details about the human storyline; the main plot is that of the basic adventure story, in which adventurers go to the moon and then return. The special effects are quite fun in this one; I particularly like the stop-motion animation used to show the astronauts leaping all over the place on the moon’s surface. Even if I can’t follow the story closely, I do sense that there is some humor in the proceedings (there is a sequence involving the boy, the bearded man, and a photographer that looks pretty amusing), and I suspect that the movie may even have been made with a juvenile audience in mind; the boy is definitely a major character in the story. It will take a translated version of the movie to help me to really understand it, but I liked what I saw.