Sergei M. Eisenstein

"Born on Jan 23, 1898 in Riga, Latvia, Sergei Mikhaylovich Eisenstein was to become one of the most world-renowned filmmakers of the first half of the 20th century ... [in] 1910 ... the family moved to St. Petersburg, where [Eisenstein's] training as an architect and engineer had a great influence on his future filmmaking.... Watching the insurgent crowds during the 1917 October revolution bearing down on the Winter Palace of the Tsars in St. Petersburg, Eisenstein foresaw his future. He enlisted in the Red Army ... in 1920 he entered the Proletkult Theater (the Theater of the People) in Moscow as an assistant stage designer.

... Eisenstein's first film, the revolutionary STRIKE, was produced in 1924 ... He proposed a new editing form, the "montage of attractions" -- in which arbitrarily chosen images, independent from the action, would be presented not in chronological sequence but in whatever way would create the maximum psychological impact ... In 1925 ... the Communist Party commissioned the renowned film BATTLESHIP POTEMKIN ... In 1958 it was voted the best film ever made by an international poll of critics. Eisenstein's next film was ... OCTOBER, or TEN DAYS THAT SHOOK THE WORLD ... [his film] ALEXANDER NEVSKY ... [was] made in 1938.

... Continually seeking to expand the filmmaking craft, Eisenstein drew upon his early interest in Japanese Kabuki theatre and Noh drama and their use of masks in his last film IVAN THE TERRIBLE ... Before he could finish the third part of the film, Eisenstein died ... on February 11, 1948. His political agendas may not have been fulfilled, but his revolutionary advances in film theory and montage will not be long forgotten."

(Excerpted from Russian Archives Online)