A storm on the Caspian Sea lands two friends, sailor Yusuf (Lev Sverdlin) and mechanic Alyosha (Nikolai Kruychkov), on the shores of Soviet Azerbaijan where they arrive at the “Lights of Communism” kolkhoz (“collective farm”). Most of the men are fighting a conflict on the Pacific Ocean, allowing them to find work at the farm. One of the administrators of the kolkhoz is the beautiful Masha (Yelena Kuzmina, Outskirts) who they both fall in love with. Their rivalry for her affections affects their work and threatens the community.
Shot on location in the Caspian region, By the Bluest of Seas is one of the most lyrical and uplifting films of the Soviet era, eschewing propaganda in favor of a comedy about love and friendship. Its ravishing cinematography and excellent performances made Boris Barnet highly regarded by film-makers Otar Ioselliani, and Jacques Rivette who considered Barnet the greatest Russian film-maker after Sergei Eisenstein.
Cast & Credits: Alexei Dolinin / Sergey Komarov / Nikolay Kryuchkov / Yelena Kuzmina / Lyalya Sateyeva / Semyon Svashenko / Directed by Boris Barnet
Technical: PAL Multi-Region / DVD5 / Black & White / Russian with English Subtitles / Mono / 4:3 / 69 minutes / MRBDVD054 / licensed from Mosfilm
Nicole Brenez on By The Bluest of Seas: