Esfir SHUB
Эсфирь ШУБ
USSR, 1927, 88mn 
Black and white, silent, documentary
Padenie dinasti Romanovykh
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Падение династии Романовых


 The Fall of the Romanov Dynasty

 La Chute de la dynastie Romanov

Directed by : Esfir SHUB (Эсфирь ШУБ)
Writing credits : Esfir SHUB (Эсфирь ШУБ)
Editing : Esfir SHUB (Эсфирь ШУБ)
Companies : Sovkino
Release Date in Russia : 1927

Plot synopsis
Shub's film, Padenie dinastii Romanovykh, is composed of spliced archive footage, which aims to show the iniquities of the Tsarist regime, the rise of popular unrest throughout the First World War and the final victory of the masses. After the exposure to countless TV documentaries and broadcasts using archive footage, a modern audience may view Shub's film as unremarkable and even boring. However, Shub's pioneering efforts in this field are remarkable. In her reminiscences, Shub recalled how she spent countless hours "opening" film documents which had lain forgotten or discarded in basements, cellars and cupboards, often unidentified as to the time, place and significance of the subject. She was even forced to track down films which had been sold abroad, and to watch hours of newsreel footage purchased from America in her attempt to find appropriate images.
Previously insignificant or trivial scraps of film attain new importance within the sequence of Shub's editing. For example, a shot of a regional Tsarist governor and his wife sipping tea in their garden, while their bulldog gambols at their feet, becomes a scene of despotic cruelty when it is intercut with shots of peasants toiling in the fields. Shub overlays the film with lengthy intertitles and uses quotes from speeches, banners and declarations to link the film fragments and place them in an appropriate historical framework, so that the viewer is left little latitude to interpret events for himself.
Source :

Women film pioneers : After the Facts – These Edits Are My Thoughts, Karen PEARLMAN, Jane M. GAINES,, 2020
Une pionnière : Esther Choub, François ALBERA,, 2009
La chute de la dynastie Romanov : de E. Choub à C. Marker, François ALBERA,, 2008

Selected in the following festivals or events :
- The Golden Age of Soviet Cinema : 1924-1930, (France), 2023
- Festival international du film d'Amiens, Amiens (France), 2021
- Intégrale Sergueï Loznitsa au Centre Pompidou et carte blanche au réalisateur, Paris (France), 2020
- Message to Man : International Short, Documentary and Animated Film Festival, St Petersburg (Russia), 2017
- Pordenone Silent Film Festival, Pordenone (Italy), 2016
- Avant-gardes russes du Centre Pompidou, Paris (France), 2011
- Moscow, St-Petersburg : two faces of Russia, Paris (France), 2010
- Europalia Russia 2005, Brussels (Belgium), 2005
- Images Russie 1908-1930 au musée d'Orsay, Paris (France), 2005