Originally titled Kolybelnaya, the 45-minute Lullaby was one of three films turned out in 1937 by legendary Soviet documentarist Dziga Vertov. It was also his last "personal" film. Under fire for not adhering to the Stalinst partyline of simplified, or "dumbed down" socialist realism, and for continuing to work in his old style of flashy, self-indulgent "formalism," Vertov had to content himself with straightforward documentaries and newsreels for the rest of his career. Curiously, when seen today Lullaby seems like pro-Soviet propaganda through and through, extoling the praises of Russian womanhood by detailing the progress made since the "equalizing" Revolution. Vertov offers glimpses of Soviet females of all ages gainfully employed in a variety of professions, from agrarian to industrial. The lyricism he brings to these images brings life to what otherwise might have been an exercise in pure tract; his genius, however, was not altogether appreciated by American film critics, who dismissed his artistic compositions and diffused lenses as "poor camerawork."
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