An Optimistic Tragedy (film)

Optimistic Tragedy (Russian: Оптимистическая трагедия, translit. Optimisticheskaya tragediya) is a 1963 Soviet film directed by Samson Samsonov. It is based on the eponymous play by Vsevolod Vishnevsky and was entered into the 1963 Cannes Film Festival.[1]

Optimistic Tragedy
Optimistic tragedy poster.jpg
USSR film poster
Directed bySamson Samsonov
Written bySamson Samsonov
Sofiya Vishnevetskaya
StarringMargarita Volodina
Boris Andreyev
Vyacheslav Tikhonov
CinematographyVladimir Monakhov
Music byVasiliy Dekhterev
Release date
  • 12 June 1963 (1963-06-12)
Running time
121 minutes
CountrySoviet Union

Optimistic Tragedy was a Soviet blockbuster of 1963 with 46 million tickets sold. The film was named Best Film of the Year and Margarita Volodina was named Best Actress of the Year by readers of the Soviet film magazine Sovetsky Ekran.

The film was shot in Sovscope 70 on black and white film stock. The prints were split into three films for exhibition in Kinopanorama 70 in some theatres.


During Russian Revolution of 1917, the Marine squad, led by anarchist leader Vozhak (Boris Andreyev) starts the revolt. The Central Committee of the Bolshevik Party sends a woman Commissar (Margarita Volodina) to form Red Army battalion from the marines to take part in the Russian Civil War.


Critical receptionEdit

Richard Porton describes An Optimistic Tragedy as "ingloriously didactic" and "typical of Soviet attempts to rationalize the brutal assault on the Kronstadt communards".[2]


  1. ^ "Festival de Cannes: Optimistic Tragedy". Retrieved 2009-02-10.
  2. ^ Porton, Richard (1999). Film and the Anarchist Imagination. Verso. p. 70.

External linksEdit