Sergei Parajanov

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David M.
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#76 Post by David M. » Mon Sep 10, 2012 3:12 pm

Well, it's an obvious bootleg, if that makes the decision any easier...

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MichaelB
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#77 Post by MichaelB » Mon Sep 10, 2012 3:20 pm

$18.98 for a DVD-R? <falls about laughing>

At the current exchange rate, the Second Sight edition is only $18.05 from Amazon.co.uk.

Granted, you'll have to factor in postage and the PAL video system, but the extras make it easily worth it.

frankjg
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#78 Post by frankjg » Mon Sep 10, 2012 3:39 pm

That's probably the best route. If it's fake I guess I should let Amazon known.

Which released versions had the Russian voiceover? I couldn't find out from all the posts out there what audio is on what except original Armenian soundtrack on current RusCico? How about the Second Sight?

Thanks for tips!

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MichaelB
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#79 Post by MichaelB » Mon Sep 10, 2012 4:04 pm

frankjg wrote:That's probably the best route. If it's fake I guess I should let Amazon known.

Which released versions had the Russian voiceover? I couldn't find out from all the posts out there what audio is on what except original Armenian soundtrack on current RusCico? How about the Second Sight?

Thanks for tips!
Of the currently available editions, the Second Sight edition is in Russian with English subtitles. I think the Ruscico is too, but it doesn't have the Second Sight extras (which are worth every penny: I've seldom learned so much about a film I thought I knew reasonably well). The Kino and Films sans frontières discs are in Armenian with English subtitles.

That said, the Armenian version isn't any more linguistically authentic - one of the many nuggets of info provided by the Second Sight extras is that despite having Armenian ancestry, Paradjanov barely spoke the language and couldn't read the intertitles of what was marketed for a long time as "the director's cut"!

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jsteffe
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#80 Post by jsteffe » Mon Sep 10, 2012 6:18 pm

frankjg wrote:Which released versions had the Russian voiceover? I couldn't find out from all the posts out there what audio is on what except original Armenian soundtrack on current RusCico? How about the Second Sight?
As far as I can tell, the original Soviet release of the Yutkevich version retained the original Armenian soundtrack, with only a few minor alterations. (Such as removing the reading from the Bible in the Armenian release version.) There was no Russian dubbing or voiceover translation, since the film did not have dramatic dialogue in the usual sense. The Yutkevich version was "Russian" mainly insofar as he substituted the Armenian release version's title cards with new Russian title cards. Not all non-Russian films were so lucky - many Georgian films suffered from intrusive Russian voiceovers laid on top of their carefully designed Georgian soundtracks.

The RUSCICO DVD of THE COLOR OF POMEGRANATES has a Russian voiceover track, but I believe that was created recently. (Common practice for RUSCICO.)

The Second Sight DVD has the original Armenian mono soundtrack, which is intact apart from Yutkevich's minor alterations that I mentioned. It is also one of the options on the RUSCICO disc and is obviously the preferred choice.

P.S. - the Parajanov book is coming along, it should be going into copy editing soon. I will let you all know when the publisher is ready to announce an official date.

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MichaelB
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#81 Post by MichaelB » Tue Sep 11, 2012 2:10 am

My apologies - I meant that the Second Sight version had Russian intertitles, not a Russian soundtrack!

(I know this film backwards, so I really should have got that right...)

frankjg
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#82 Post by frankjg » Thu Sep 13, 2012 3:23 am

Well there certainly is black market activity going on with The Color of Pomegranates.

The Amazon on-demand DVD is a complete sham, it's actually amazing they let someone sign this up with Amazon and Createspace without checking it out.

I will detail my impressions: This is worse than a bad quality download from Youtube Archive.org or something similar.
The disc menu is just blank with no company name. Film starts without any logo from the releasing company.
The screen size is about 3/4 full, like a Youtube video in the middle of the screen. It's very pixelated with jagged edges, I can barely even read the subtitles. The "On-Demand" disc was shrink wrapped, but had scratches fingerprints lint and fibers on the disc.

I have notified Amazon and let them know they do sell the commercially released versions from Kino in the US.
Feel free to do the same through their contact us help page with any other relevant information. This thing should not be sold. Especially since anyone who sees it will be watching digital distortion instead of the film. I can only think of their reaction if they never saw it before.

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jsteffe
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#83 Post by jsteffe » Thu Sep 13, 2012 10:57 am

MichaelB wrote:My apologies - I meant that the Second Sight version had Russian intertitles, not a Russian soundtrack!

(I know this film backwards, so I really should have got that right...)
I knew that was what you meant, of course! Mainly I wanted to clarify the situation for people who are less familiar with the film.

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jsteffe
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#84 Post by jsteffe » Wed May 08, 2013 2:58 pm

At long last, my book The Cinema of Sergei Parajanov is now available for pre-order on Amazon. It's scheduled for publication this fall.
Sergei Parajanov (1924–1990) flouted the rules of both filmmaking and society in the Soviet Union and paid a heavy personal price. An ethnic Armenian in the multicultural atmosphere of Tbilisi, Georgia, he was one of the most innovative directors of postwar Soviet cinema. Parajanov succeeded in creating a small but marvelous body of work whose style embraces such diverse influences as folk art, medieval miniature painting, early cinema, Russian and European art films, surrealism, and Armenian, Georgian, and Ukrainian cultural motifs.

The Cinema of Sergei Parajanov is the first English-language book on the director's films and the most comprehensive study of his work. James Steffen provides a detailed overview of Parajanov's artistic career: his identity as an Armenian in Georgia and its impact on his aesthetics; his early films in Ukraine; his international breakthrough in 1964 with Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors; his challenging 1969 masterpiece, The Color of Pomegranates, which was reedited against his wishes; his unrealized projects in the 1970s; and his eventual return to international prominence in the mid-to-late 1980s with The Legend of Suram Fortress and Ashik-Kerib. Steffen also provides a rare, behind-the-scenes view of the Soviet film censorship process and tells the dramatic story of Parajanov's conflicts with the authorities, culminating in his 1973–77 arrest and imprisonment on charges related to homosexuality.

Ultimately, the figure of Parajanov offers a fascinating case study in the complicated dynamics of power, nationality, politics, ethnicity, and culture in the republics of the former Soviet Union.

"In the temple of cinema, there are images, light, and reality. Sergei Parajanov was the master of that temple."—Jean-Luc Godard

"Steffen has managed to capture Parajanov's unique style in a language that is simple and elucidating, making you want to watch his films again and again."—Birgit Beumers, editor of Studies in Russian and Soviet Cinema

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zedz
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#85 Post by zedz » Wed May 08, 2013 7:53 pm

Congratulations, James!

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knives
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#86 Post by knives » Wed May 08, 2013 7:55 pm

Good on you. This might be the thing that finally gets me to the man. It certainly helped the last time someone on the board had a book to promote.

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domino harvey
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#87 Post by domino harvey » Wed May 08, 2013 8:07 pm

Awesome work!

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jsteffe
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#88 Post by jsteffe » Wed May 08, 2013 8:13 pm

Thank you! Obviously my hope is to attract new converts. :D

But even if you don't care for his films he lived an undeniably fascinating life. Eventually I would like to write a full-scale biography...

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John Edmond
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#89 Post by John Edmond » Wed May 08, 2013 8:20 pm

Congratulations, it was an automatic wishlisting. I'm looking forward to the personal retrospective that will accompany reading your book. And let us know if you have a better, more profitable, point of sale.

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jsteffe
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#90 Post by jsteffe » Thu May 30, 2013 11:49 am

John Edmond wrote:Congratulations, it was an automatic wishlisting. I'm looking forward to the personal retrospective that will accompany reading your book. And let us know if you have a better, more profitable, point of sale.
I believe that ebooks can sometimes pay higher royalties, though personally I still prefer reading print books. I don't have strong feelings one way or the other--I suspect most people go for the lowest price or most convenient vendor, which is reasonable enough. Probably the most "profitable" point of sale would be directly from the publisher's website, but it isn't listed there just yet, it's still pretty early. Here is the Barnes & Noble listing, for those prefer to order from them.

The cover design hasn't been posted yet, but I'm very pleased with the final result! I think you will be too, once you see it.

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jsteffe
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#91 Post by jsteffe » Wed Jun 12, 2013 2:38 pm

The cover design is now officially posted on Amazon:

Image

This month I am correcting the proofs and compiling the index. Even though the manuscript was in good shape--the press hired an excellent copyeditor--it is still a tremendous amount of work! Let this be a warning to any of you who are planning to write your own book someday...

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MichaelB
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#92 Post by MichaelB » Wed Jun 12, 2013 2:53 pm

jsteffe wrote:This month I am correcting the proofs and compiling the index. Even though the manuscript was in good shape--the press hired an excellent copyeditor--it is still a tremendous amount of work! Let this be a warning to any of you who are planning to write your own book someday...
As a part-time copyeditor/proofreader/indexer, I entirely sympathise - I'm working with an excellent author right now whose manuscript needed very little work, but of course that made it doubly important that I spotted the tiny handful of mistakes that he let through!

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jsteffe
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#93 Post by jsteffe » Wed Jun 12, 2013 3:05 pm

MichaelB wrote:As a part-time copyeditor/proofreader/indexer, I entirely sympathise - I'm working with an excellent author right now whose manuscript needed very little work, but of course that made it doubly important that I spotted the tiny handful of mistakes that he let through!
You folks are golden! This is one of the reasons why I won't ever self-publish if I can avoid it.

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MichaelB
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#94 Post by MichaelB » Wed Jun 12, 2013 3:12 pm

In the current Sight & Sound, I notice that a sub-editor discreetly corrected a geographical flub in my review of Criterion's Richard III...

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jsteffe
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#95 Post by jsteffe » Thu Aug 08, 2013 4:35 pm

Next week the International House in Philadelphia is programming a 35mm film series of Parajanov films called "Sergei Parajanov: Surrealist Poet of Soviet Cinema." I will be there to introduce and lead Q&A sessions for Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors and The Color of Pomegranates.

Wednesday, August 14, 7 PM: Nostalgia (Andrei Tarkovsky, 1983), the new 35mm print distributed by Kino.
Thursday, August 15, 7 PM: The Legend of Suram Fortress (Sergei Parajanov, 1984)
Friday, August 16, 7 PM: Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors (Sergei Parajanov, 1964). Introduction and Q&A session by James Steffen.
Saturday, August 17, 5 PM: Ashik-Kerib (Sergei Parajanov, 1988)
Saturday, August 17, 8 PM: The Color of Pomegranates (Sergei Parajanov, 1969). Introduction and Q&A session by James Steffen.

One a side note, the University of Wisconsin Press has listed my book for pre-order.

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htshell
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#96 Post by htshell » Thu Aug 08, 2013 4:56 pm

Our graphic designer made a cool poster that is hanging in front of the building. Excuse the Instagram filter...

Image

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jsteffe
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#97 Post by jsteffe » Thu Aug 08, 2013 5:05 pm

Very cool, appropriately collage-style! Personally, I'm really looking forward to seeing THE COLOR OF POMEGRANATES in 35mm again, it has been a while.

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jsteffe
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#98 Post by jsteffe » Wed Aug 21, 2013 12:23 pm

I'm really glad that I went to the Parajanov series at the International House in Philadelphia--there was a huge turnout and a very appreciative audience for Parajanov's films. I was especially impressed with how the audience responded to The Color of Pomegranates, which is admittedly a challenging (though gorgeous!) work. It's obvious that the International House series has managed to cultivate a dedicated audience from the Philadelphia area.

Too bad I don't live in the area, because I would have liked to see the three Jacques Rivette 35mm prints that they're showing next month.

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jsteffe
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#99 Post by jsteffe » Fri Aug 30, 2013 4:16 pm

Update: my book on Parajanov is on track for publication in October with University of Wisconsin Press. I turned in the corrected proofs and index, and now it's going to the printer. Here is a link to the publisher's webpage for the book. This second link to a Dropbox download is for the publisher's official 30% discount flyer. They are offering a bigger discount than Amazon. Besides that, it's good to order directly from the publisher.

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jsteffe
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Re: Sergei Parajanov

#100 Post by jsteffe » Wed Sep 25, 2013 5:20 pm

Good news, my Parajanov book (The Cinema of Sergei Parajanov) is now in stock and shipping through various outlets. Apparently it is also in stock at some New York Barnes and Noble stores as well, in case you live in that area and want to browse through it.

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