Ivan The Terrible Part One

1944 directed by Sergei Eisenstein starring Nikolai Cherkasov as Ivan IV, Lyudmila Tselikovskaya as Czarina Anastasia, Serafima Bermin as Boyarina Efrosinia Staritskaya, Mikhail Nasvanov as Prince Kurbsky and Mikhail Kusnetsov as Fyodor Basmanov.  Upon his coronation as Czar  IV, Ivan declares his intention of uniting a fragmented Russian under one rule, which puts him at odds with the seedy Boyars, and demon treachery lurks behind every shadow.

This is from the un-restored, public domain print that was initially prepared for international distribution and then released on video-tape.  It has the original, badly recorded music and the white subtitles, (burned in).

Factoid of interest: Eisenstein was impressed with John Barrymore’s portrayal of Mr. Hyde and used that characterization as a model for his Ivan.  He intended, over the course of three films, to show Ivan’s gradual deterioration as a transformation into a Hyde-like character. Eisenstein died before part three was filmed.


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