RESTORING A PIONEER: TWO FORGOTTEN MASTERWORKS BY HAMO BEK-NAZARYAN

 

Made five years after the establishment of the Soviet - Armenian film industry, Hamo Bek - Nazarian's 1930 silent docudrama Land of Nairi occupies a unique place in the annals of not only Armenian, but also Soviet film history. Mixing archival materials, staged scenes and observational footage, Bek - Nazarian created a remarkably poetic and kaleidoscopic portrait of Armenia's first decade as a Soviet republic. Bypassing traditional approaches to film documentation, the director achieved an almost surrealistic pitch in what is his most avant-garde work, and an entirely distinctive gem of early documentary cinema. Working in entirely different conditions a decade later, under Stalin's stifling ideological control of the Soviet film industry, Bek - Nazarian managed to continue his exploration of grand humanist narratives in his moving 1942 anti - fascist parable The Daughter. Practically unseen since the days of their theatrical release, both of these films reveal the rich diversity of the director's extensive oeuvre and the profoundly universalist rhetoric underlying his work.

 

On Hamo Bek - Nazarian's 130th anniversary, the NCCA is preparing new, digitally restored 4K scans of Land of Nairi and The Daughter from archival 35mm positive prints, to be presented as a double - bill for theatrical release in Armenia and international festival screenings.

 

 

Contacts

  • +374 (10) 52-20-32
  • +374 (10) 52-20-38
  • kinokentron@gmail.com
  • Teryan 3a
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