Night Over China DVD
"The Grandeur and Folly of China's Fallen Revolution"
Night over China (Soviet Union, 1971): An extraordinary document from one
of the Cold War's bitterest conflicts--between the Soviet Union and Communist China-- this film spares no quarter in its indictment of Maoist evils and misrule. Includes many remarkable sequences, drawn from Chinese, Polish, Western as well as Soviet sources, illustrating the grandeur and folly of China's fallen Revolution. Notable scenes depict the early upheavals of rural land reform, the "backyard" steel furnace campaign of the Great Leap Forward; and the Cultural Revolution (including Mao's celebrated swim in the Yangtze River, surrounded by swimming phalanxes of banner-waving Red Guards). B&W, 59 minutes,English narration. (the transfer, from original 35 mm print, is of especially fine quality).
Stock footage database description:
Produced by the Central Documentary Film Studios of the Soviet Union, this film includes extensive footage from the 8th and 9th Party Congresses of the Chinese Communist Party (held in 1956 and 1969 respectively). The 1956 sequences feature speeches from Liu Shaoqui and Mao Zedong; 1969 footage features Lin Biao (synchronous sound) and Mao. Other diplomatic/ political scenes include: Alexei Kosygin's 1965 state visit to Beijing (Kosygin, Mao, Zhou Enlai among dignitaries shown); and the 24th Congress of CCCP, featuring brief excerpt from Brezhnev's address (synchronous sound). In its account of the Chinese Revolution, the film includes segments of social historical interest, in which scenes of "China immemorial" (nomadic herders, peasants using traditional technologies) are contrasted with those of socialist modernization (introduction of mechanization into the countryside, including one segment showing Tibetan women driving tractors newly introduced into that land). Special stress is laid upon the technological assistance provided China during the 1950s and early 1960s by the Soviet Union and other Eastern Bloc countries: iron and steel complexes built largely by Sviet advisors and engineers, a cement complex built by East German technicians, a sugar refinery built by Polish "envoys", an electric power station in which Czechoslovakian advisors figure prominently. In Moscow, Chinese workers are shown receiving training in Soviet auto manufacture; other scenes depict Chinese peasants visiting Soviet collective farms, where they learn about mechanization and other modern technologies. The Great Leap Forward segment includes exceptional footage of the "backyard" steel furnace campaigns, including peasant political rallies and the building of the communal blast furnaces themselves. Also included: rare footage from the "War against the Sparrows" (in which Beijing's residents were mobilized to completely eradicate the city's sparrow population during the mid-1950s). Finally, extensive segments depict the Cultural Revolution as the ultimate in Maoist "cynicism", in which mass indoctrination of the youth is used against the regulars of the Chinese Communist Party, in order to pave the way for Mao's personal dictatorship (and wreck the unity of the international communist movement in the process).
USSR, 1971, B&W, 59 minutes, English Commentary.
NTSC Region 0 encoding (Entire World)