Born 1900, Russia
Died 1989
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Александр Иванович МЕДВЕДКИН
Filmography (extracts)
1956 - Bespokoynaya vesna (Беспокойная весна)
1946 - Osvobozhdennaya zemlya (Освобожденная земля)
1939 - Tsetushchaya yunost (Цветущая юность) [documentary, 18 mn]
1938 - The New Moscow (Новая Москва) [fiction, 100 mn]
1936 - Miracle Woman (Чудесница) [fiction, 81 mn]
1934 - Happiness / Money-Grubbers (Счастье) [fiction, 66 mn]
1932 - Gazeta N°4 (Газета №4) [documentary, 10 mn]
1932 - Yak zhivyosh, tovarishch girnyak ? (Как живеш, товарищ горняк?) [documentary, 9 mn]
1932 - Gazeta N°4 (Газета № 4) [documentary, 10 mn]
1932 - Empty Space (Пустое место) [documentary, 10 mn]
1932 - Dyra (Дыра)
1932 - Zapadnya (Западня)
1931 - Pro Belogo Bychka (Про Белого Бычка) [fiction, 10 mn]
1931 - Duryen, ty duryen! (Дурень, ты дурень!)
1931 - Frukty-ovoshchi (Фрукты-овощи)
1930 - Derzhi vora (Держи вора)
1930 - Paleshko (Палешко)
1928 - Bergi zdorovye (Береги здоровье) [documentary, 9 mn]
1938 - The New Moscow (Новая Москва) from Aleksandr MEDVEDKIN [fiction, 100 mn]
1936 - Miracle Woman (Чудесница) from Aleksandr MEDVEDKIN [fiction, 81 mn]
1934 - Happiness / Money-Grubbers (Счастье) from Aleksandr MEDVEDKIN [fiction, 66 mn]
1931 - Duryen, ty duryen! (Дурень, ты дурень!)
Sites : IMDb,, Kinopoisk

Author :

Aleksandr Medvedkin was born in Penza on 19th of February 1900. He studied at the faculty of mechanics in a secondary technical school. He took part in the Russian Civil War as a political worker of the Political Governance of Revolutionary War Council (PUR) of the First Cavalry, he directed the soldier’s theater of grotesque and buffoonery, “the heart of it were satirical clowning, luboks, amateur operettas, comic attractions”. As he wrote in his memories, then he felt the “great and all-destructive” power of satire. Gradually soldier’s humor outgrew itself and was directed to more acute topics.
The end of the 20’s – is the era of a creative rise in soviet cinema, the search for new, and revolutionary forms that would shape the becoming of the art. A. Medvedkin would define his task as follows: “A film in one box! Sharp! Poignant! Made fast, it must cling to the big screen guerilla, like a burdock to the dog’s tail, and move along with it on any road of the film distribution!”.
In 1932 A. Medvedkin headed the agit-cinetrain of “Soyuzkinochronicle” – an operational “film studio on rails”, that would tour in a shock-work mode the largest construction sites of Stalin’s five-year plan. The Cinetrain operated from 1932 to 1934, during that time no less than 116 fims were made. A. Medvedkin successfully developed new forms of newsreel – short film-poster, film-feuilleton, as well as the genre of satire.
In 1934 the director made according to film critics, his best picture “Happiness” – a silent comedy, where he used the language and the aesthetics the lubok, Russian folk pictures. The film “New Moscow”, 1938, an eccentric musical comedy that imagined the future of Stalin’s program of reconstruction of Moscow, was banned from screening.
During the war years A. Medvedkin directed the front-line film groups. From 1954 to 1956 he led a group of camera operators who filmed the development of the Virgin Lands campaign in Kazakhstan. Since the late 1950s he worked for the Central Documentary Film Studio (CSDF) in the genre of political film.
Notwithstanding that most of the works of Medvedskin’s Cinetrain were lost, and little of its activity was covered by the press, it has become a legend, which avant-garde practices found a continuation in the work of the French filmmaker Chris Marker and the Medvedkin’s group that formed in 1967.

Commentaries and bibliography
- Les "groupes Medvedkine" (1967-1974), transfert tardif de la culture d’agit-prop soviétique ? Jasmine JACQ, 2022, Slavica occitania, 2022, N° 55
- Article + film avec sous-titres anglais Le Train en marche de Chris Marker «Поезд в пути» Криса Маркера: режиссёр как производитель OLEG GORYAINOV, 2017,
- Men with movie cameras: why documentary cinema owes everything to Soviet filmmakers Samuel GOFF, 2017,
- Deux fables socialistes d’Alexandre Medvedkine Catherine GERY, 2016, Presses de l'Inalco
- Le kinoskaz ou « dit » cinématographique : quelques principes théoriques pour un genre nouveau Catherine GERY, 2016, Presses de l'Inalco
- Camp Cinema : Russian Style 2012,
- Le Bonheur de Aleksandr MEDVEDKINE Olivier BITOUN, 2009,
- Entre la chambre à coucher et le chantier Trois DVD soviétiques des années trente. Éditions Montparnasse. , Emile BRETON, 2009,
- La Moscou du « plan stalinien » à travers l’œuvre de L’OST et la fiction cinématographique , Valérie POZNER, Élisabeth ESSAIAN, Cécile PICHON-BONIN, 2007, Presses Universitaires de Rennes
- Alexander Medvedkin , Emma WIDDIS, 2005, I.B.Tauris, 2005
- Александр Медведкин и традиции русского кино. Заметки о становлении поэтики. , Nikolay IZVOLOV, 2000,
- Les origines du cinéma soviétique : un regard neuf , Myriam TSIKOUNAS, 1992, Cerf
- Александр Медведкин, сатирик , Rostislav YURENYEV, 1981, Союз кинематографистов СССР, Бюро пропаганды советского киноискусства
- Про белого бычка. Кинофельетон [A propos du film Sur le taurillon blanc, 1931, d'Alexandr Medvedkine] , Aleksandr MEDVEDKIN, 1974,, Iskusstvo

Photos and videos