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A screen adaptation of the work of Robert Warren. The plot focuses on Willie Stark, a man who, despite his age, is very energetic and ambitious. He breeds in society all sorts of demagogy, which bear fruit: the enemies are defeated, and those who doubt already do not like the soul in the main character. Stark appoints Little Duffy as his deputy. Duffy is an adventurer who once worked for McMurphy. Stark feels that he is in power and is keen to do whatever it takes to run for the Senate. Judge Irwin stands in his way. The main character is already looking for dirt on him. Jack Burden will help him in this dirty business.

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There are many Soviet films that we all know, have seen many times on TV, among the famous films, not counting comedies, there are many serious films with strong direction, worthy acting, and a strong plot. This is the "Eternal Call", and "Seventeen Moments of Spring", "Experts lead the investigation", and others. However, there are many more noteworthy films of the Soviet period that are unknown to a wide range of viewers. I learned about one of them quite recently, although I am already thirty years old and have watched a lot of Soviet films. "All the King's Men" is its name, and it was filmed in the early seventies. The plot is based on a work written by Robert Warren, an American writer. I became interested in the novel itself, read it and was surprised, I thought that the idea to put America in such a light belonged to our filmmakers. But no, the film was shot very “close to the text”. So that such an idea belonged to the very pen of a writer, an American, by the way. However, the semantic load, which both the novel and its adaptation, come across with speculation. Willie Stark is considered the central character, but the role of the protagonist rightfully belongs to Jack Burden, a journalist, Willie's comrade-in-arms, because it is he who talks about the events that are taking place, evaluates everything, we are presented with events through the prism of his life, thoughts, and experience. This iconic role is played by Mikhail Kazakov, in this film he has an amazing role, which allowed his talent to be fully and completely revealed, to flourish in magnificent color. However, Kazakov is talented not only as an actor, but also as a director. He knows cinema, all the wisdom. How does the hero Jack Burden appear before us? Pleasant-looking, self-confident, intelligent, who at the same time had already seen a lot in life, there were disappointments in it, he was tired of social life, tired of deception, he does not want to step over his principles, but he has to adapt to existing reality. This person knows that there are many contradictions in life. Such a vivid image of the hero came out largely thanks to Mikhail Kazakov. When you read a book, images of heroes appear in your head, so this is an accurate hit on the target. This is exactly how I imagined Jack Burden. Well, now about Willie Stark, a simple-minded guy who did not have enough stars from the sky, he thought that power belongs only to graduates, honest people and decent people. But it turned out that in order to get your hands on power, you do not need to be either honest, or decent, or have a special education. It is enough to be punchy, go over the head, be cocky. The novel clearly shows the changes that happened to the hero, who he was before he got power and who he became after. In the film, the line is erased. It is a pity, it was possible to demonstrate what the authorities do to people.Maybe, of course not with everyone, there are exceptions, but exceptions, as we all know, only confirm the rules. Willy Stark is no worse than others, but not better, a typical representative of the authorities, who seems to want to do good things for the good of society, but in this case thinks more likely not about the benefits that will go to society, but about those that will go to him. Will make a free hospital for people - this will increase his authority. He got into the system and adjusted to it, did not go against it, and will go against the system, wanting to change something only a few. The role is played by the actor Geogiy Zhzhenov, he quite realistically reproduced the image of Willie Stark. How convincing he is in his speeches! It's just a psychologist from God! In my opinion, to film such a novel is a rather difficult task, and it was difficult to write a script, but this task was completed, and it seems to me that it was in the top five. It is difficult to transfer to the screens of history, in which there are many philosophical reflections, ideas, morality, the search for logical explanations for this or that. I will not say that the whole essence of the novel is conveyed, but this is not real, but from what it was possible to do, it was done to the maximum. A huge responsibility fell on the shoulders of Mikhail Kazakov, the off-screen comments he gave on behalf of his character. I believe that the writer did not set himself the task of describing what was the piracy company of Willie Stark and his associates, he wanted to emphasize that in the United States in the thirties there was a crisis of moral values, a reassessment of moral values ​​took place. It turned out that generally accepted principles, rules of behavior, and even laws - turned out to be at odds with reality. The situation has escalated, the atmosphere has become tense. Therefore, the story has enough drama and dark tones. However, there is also some optimism. I would like to believe that a period of insight is coming, when you assess what is happening soberly, you understand what actions lead to what, you can understand in advance what the result will be, the consequence and already correct your behavior. Well, there is also a message - do not forget about honor, dignity, duty and conscience!


I don’t remember that this series was on television ... For sure, it was on, but for some reason I did not notice it. This is a strange thing, because a large number of Soviet films and serials are shown on our channels quite often, for example, "Seventeen Moments of Spring" or "The Investigation is Conducted by an Expert." These films have a good cast, and the content is very deep and exciting. But why don't they devote airtime, for example, to the film "All the King's Men"? After all, this series is not at all worse than the films I mentioned earlier. It is definitely worth watching and a large number of viewers need to know about it. After all, I only recently became aware of the existence of this motion picture, which was filmed based on the work of the same name by Robert Warren. The series was released in 1971. The story of its creation is very interesting and dramatic, firstly, after reading the novel in the studio, it was clear that it was very difficult to shoot a miniseries about America in the Soviet Union. America is not at all like our country. But, of course, they wanted to shoot, because there was an opportunity to show how bad and greedy the American government is and how Western politicians behave. At that time in the USSR, it was impossible even to stutter about the Soviet power. She was considered pious among us. Alexander Gutkovich, being the scriptwriter and director, by the way, was almost thrown out of the party for the fact that the director of the picture, Daniil Nezhinsky, spent too much on the film. By the way, Daniel was given six years for the financial costs of this film. In general, it is strange that Gutkovich got it, and again they wanted to make a film about America and not spend money at the same time? This is not about taking pictures of meadows, and not even about equipment in glades. This is a film about another country, which is not much like ours.I don't know all the details, but something suggests that it is not the film crew that is to blame, but people of a different status who simply condemned others. And this is not all the tragic events. The film has already begun to shoot, when suddenly Pavel Luspekaev, an actor of one of the main roles, dies. Now the role of Congressman Willie Stark was to be played by another person ... Yes, unfortunately, the artist died, but we had to look for a replacement for him, as a result, Georgiy Zhzhonov was taken on his role, although there were a lot of applicants for this role, including Y. Lyubimov, Oh Efremov and S. Bondarchuk. Also, Mikhail Kazakov himself fought fiercely for Geogri Zhzhonov, who played the role of Jack Verdun in this film. In general, the film adaptation of the film was beneficial to the Soviet authorities, because the agitation about the negative features of the American political system was only a film adaptation of what the American writer wrote. It so happened that, in principle, there was nothing to blame Soviet cinema for. But this is not the value of the film, of course. When you watch a series, it doesn't matter at all. The philosophy of the film is important here. I came across this film only after I had read the novel by Robert Penn Warren itself. I really liked the book, and not because I am such a bookworm and literalist, I also like to watch films, especially of high quality. The question here is different. The book contained a lot of explanations and thoughts of the main character. These reflections are the important value of the novel itself. The second point is that the main character is not Willie Stark himself, as many believe, but the journalist Jack Verdun himself. Through his judgments and philosophical thoughts, everything is considered. The role of this character was played by Mikhail Kazakov. And this is very cool, firstly, this actor really wanted to star in the film and just came to Minsk for negotiations for this role. He read the script and was delighted when he was offered the role of Jack. It was this role that he wanted. Secondly, Kazakov right at the meeting in Belarus, he said that he would justify the trust given to him and kept his word. He did an amazing job. I liked Mikhail Kazakov as a director when I saw the film "The Pokrovskie Vorota", but in this miniseries I realized that I was facing an amazing actor. He got a difficult character, but he played it perfectly. Jack turned out to be elegant, handsome, not willing to pretend in the circle of the American entourage, he was tired of the principles of success and behavior. He no longer wants to compare what he wants with what is needed. He is a moral man, and therefore from his environment he becomes very bad ... Life is so ambiguous. Mikhail Kazakov was able to convey this range of contradictions. You believe him. He, however, gave himself up to this role completely one hundred percent. Willie Stark immediately comes after Verdun in importance, if at all it's appropriate to divide the characters that way. Willie Stark in Warren's work is presented to us as a man who has got out of the ordinary people into politics. Vili was shocked that in order to be a politician and make some kind of decision, it is not always and in general necessary to understand the jurisprudence, to have a step-by-step plan for the country's achievements towards the designated goals. It turns out that you don't even need to be overly truthful here. In the series, however, his surprise and this side itself, the authors do not show these contrasts in the worldview. This is a pity. It would be important for a Soviet person to see this. Otherwise, the film can just be considered to some extent as propaganda, as if all the people there, in America, are greedy and obsessed with power. Without telling about the prerequisites for the current situation, the film looks more like a descriptive part without a proper semantic load, not so deep and not so honest in relation to the viewer. The important point here is that power changes a person.The authorities have other laws that need to be understood, the authorities are like a predatory creature that cannot be reached with words, they need something material, something concrete, but in return they do not try to be as responsive. That is why everything is so tough in the government. When a politician tries to do a good deed, for example, build a medical center, he is ready for a lot, using a variety of methods to achieve the goal. Vili is an ordinary politician, he is the same as many others in his environment. He did not come to break the system, he came to power with the aim of being there and working there, as has long been customary here. Willy Stark was beautifully performed by Georgy Zhzhonov. I liked his pre-election messages to his audience very much. In them, he very skillfully chose the words, adjusted himself correctly, came to the conclusion that he does not hide that he has an interest in this matter, but he does not deceive anyone. Great and thoughtful speeches deserve respect. The story of the heroine Sadie Burke, performed by Tatyana Lavrova, also added color to the series. She perfectly conveyed those feelings inside a person when everything is already crumbling. Convincing play allows you to reflect on this problem. She skillfully played her character. Of course, it is very difficult to film such a strong novel. There is so much in it and it is very difficult to convey all of its diversity of thoughts and conclusions. Even the off-screen comments of Mikhail himself could not reflect the entire integrity of Robert Warren's novel. The main idea of ​​the work of the writer was that it is not worth considering and evaluating the stages that were undertaken in the course of achieving the goal. It is worth first of all to evaluate the results, and by what means they were achieved - this is no longer so important. Should we attach special importance to an immoral result, even if the attempts were made in very good intentions, and should we criticize for a moral result if in the course of its achievement there were a number of not entirely correct assumptions? The law is stronger than morality. Warren's book is pretty realistic, and therefore the film turned out to be fascinating.


In fact, I don't know what audience this film of the seventy-first year of the last century is aimed at. So, honestly, there is absolutely no idea which of the spectators will pay attention to this work, because, at most, it was created for special connoisseurs of the genre and the era. And of course fans of great adaptations will also have fun. It is worth noting that before us is a film that lasts about two hundred minutes, so it was divided into parts, and so that now it turned out to be quite a wealthy mini-series. I would like to note that the film adaptation of the work of Robert Warren turned out to be very high quality. Something, but our authors in the Soviet Union, it turns out, even though they did not do multi-part projects, but they knew how to shoot long films. And watching this project does not leave any unpleasant impressions. Rather the opposite. Here we observe how superbly the paper plot is realized on the screen, while still there are differences, fictional fiction, a little self-satisfaction of the author, which may not be striking, but still takes place. But the most important thing that will catch the eye of knowledgeable people is the era during which the events of the series take place. Firstly, everything in the book takes place in the twenties of the last century, when the series still describes the sixties more for some reason I do not understand. It is also worth noting that not all storylines are marked, so I want to highlight the fact that attention is paid to the brightest and, perhaps, the most interesting events. The main character is also surprising. We modern audiences, taught by modern superhero films, will be shocked when we learn that the main character here is Willie Stark.Yes, it turns out funny, because we have before us a Soviet-style series, where a surname is already used, which today will become incredibly popular in the world of cinema. The main character looks like a kind of a very active politician who will eventually get the right to rule the whole state. The character has to fight with bad languages, which always arrange demagoguery, as well as stupid blackmailers who believe that power is in their hands. In general, the authors of the script really impress with their decisions, their views on life, their unique ideas of the struggle between the authorities and the people who obey it. The theme of the battle for the right to have the main and significant voice in the country of McMurphy and Stark is shown as very interesting and vivid, it seems to me. The couple really turns out to be ardent opponents of each other. In this confrontation, no one can feel at ease, let alone survive ... Well, in general, you will see everything for yourself, because I highly recommend this good and really interesting old series. As a film adaptation, it may not be so voluminous and ubiquitous, but in fact we have a very interesting political story with its scandals, intrigues, conspiracies, and so on. I would like to discuss the cast, because it is great here. Firstly, Willie Stark is performed by the great actor Georgy Zhzhenov, who seemed to me very natural in his role and extremely charismatic. It is a pity that such an outstanding actor is no longer with us. Mikhail Kazakov also showed himself well, and the female roles played by Tatyana Lavrova, Aoa Demidova and Alexandra Klimova are also not in doubt. All in all, a rather lively and very enjoyable series that will definitely bring you great pleasure, despite its age. Enjoy your viewing experience. Recommend!


I really enjoyed watching this movie. The work itself, on which this film was filmed, did not seem so fascinating to me. The book was even boring due to many points that were not worth paying attention to, for example, the author left in the novel for abstract reasoning. This is why the film wins so much. The viewer gets an excellent pace of development of the plot, and the actors convey its essence to us. As for the characters themselves, they are exactly the same as those of the novelist Robert Warren. Even those roles that seem to be insignificant on the scale of the picture were shown in the same way as on the pages of R. Warren's work. These are Gummi Larson, performed in the film by Evstigneev, and the Scientific Judge, perfectly shown by Papanov. Rafinad Lev Durov played incomparably. His acting was flawless, and this character turned out even better than in the novel itself, more interesting. As you have already noticed, eminent actors of that time were involved in this Soviet cinema, these are Georgy Zhzhonov, Mikhail Kazakov, Lev Durov, Tatyana Lavrova, E. Evstigneev, Lev Durov, Anatoly Papanov. Zhzhenov himself claimed that the role of Willie Stark for him is one of the best in his entire career. I think that for Lavrova and Kazakov their roles will also remain some of the best. I can be glad for the domestic cinema, at least for this film. Comparing it to the latest American adaptation of Warren's novel, I liked our work much better. And although the domestic film was in black and white, and little money was spent on its funding, it caused more emotions. More precisely, for some reason I didn't like Hollywood work. Yes, everything was colorful with them and everything was staged perfectly, at the same time from the alternative version I saw I did not get what in ours. Although I admit that the Americans did a good job. Still, our Willie Stark, Georgy Zhzhenov, seemed more convincing to me, and our domestic actors were more interesting. This, of course, is all very subjective, because it is simply impossible not to notice the talent of Anthony Hopkins and Sean Penn.I really respect their work, they always do everything professionally and with maximum efficiency. Our version is even closer because, nevertheless, the novel was read by our people through the prism of our mentality, our culture and the moments that the authors thought should be taken into account. It's no secret that a lot of things have been removed from the novel. A lot of work was still done on the work, so the film seemed much closer to the Soviet person. I think that the American viewer would appreciate the American version. An interesting and tragic fact is that initially Pavel Luspekaev was supposed to play the role of Stark. He conquered everyone on his tests, but, unfortunately, passed away ... How Willie Stark would have turned out in Pavel Luspekaev, we will never know now. Although there are archives where he plays this character. But it is impossible to say anything about them in general. Whoever tried to get this role, among them were Sergey Bondarchuk, and Anrey Popov, and Armen Dzhigarkhanyan with Yuri Lyubimov and Leonid Markov ... But still, the choice fell on George. A very high level has been set for cinema. And we could even compete in those years, in the seventies, with American works. But, unfortunately, we have few brilliant works. But there is this one and it is amazing. What wonderful actors we have in this movie, full of creative energy ... many of them started their journey then. Someone is no longer alive. But the main thing is that they have already left their legacy - the film "All the King's Men". This film is worth watching. It can definitely be attributed to the golden collection of Soviet cinema.

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