Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Mind Blowing 56' Epic ILYA MUROMETS 4K Restoration

Deaf Crocodile Films will digitally release the 4K restoration of famed fantasy filmmaker Aleksandr Ptushko’s visually stunning 1956 medieval epic ILYA MUROMETS (THE SWORD & THE DRAGON) on June 28th in North America following its Blu-ray release last month. 

Legendary fantasy filmmaker Aleksandr Ptushko’s sweeping, visual FX-filled epic is one of his most enchanting achievements: a stunning Cinemascope ballad of heroic medieval knights, ruthless Tugar invaders, wind demons, and three-headed fire-breathing dragons. The film stars Boris Andreyev as the bogatyr (warrior) Ilya, a mythic figure in the Kyivan Rus’ culture that pre-dated both modern Ukraine and Russia (much of the film’s action is set in Kyiv, and Ilya’s relics are held today in the Kyiv Pechersk Lavra monastery). Based on a series of famous byliny (oral epics), the film follows Ilya as he wages a decades-long battle against the Tugars who threaten his homeland, kidnap his wife, and raise his own son to fight against him. 

Ptushko began his career in the 1930s and went on to become a combination of Walt Disney, Ray Harryhausen, and Mario Bava for his dazzling, bejeweled fantasies including THE STONE FLOWER, SADKO, SAMPO, and RUSLAN & LUDMILA. The first Cinemascope film produced in the Soviet Union, ILYA MUROMETS was released in a truncated, dubbed version in the U.S. at the height of the Cold War as THE SWORD & THE DRAGON, downplaying the epic poetry and lyricism of the original. 

The film has been restored in 4K by Mosfilm with additional restoration efforts by Craig Rogers for its first-ever official U.S. release in its original form by Deaf Crocodile in association with Seagull Films. 

All the toy images you can handle!

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