Mechanics of the Brain

Mechanics of the Brain (Russian: Механика головного мозга, romanizedMyekhanika golovnogo mozga) is a 1926 Soviet documentary film directed by Vsevolod Pudovkin, a popularization of Ivan Pavlov's studies in classical conditioning.[1] The picture is considered the first Russian popular science film.[2][3] The motion picture is the first independent work of Pudovkin as a director and also marks the start of his collaboration with cinematographer Anatoli Golovnya.

Mechanics of the Brain
Directed byVsevolod Pudovkin
CinematographyAnatoli Golovnya
Release date
‹See TfM›
  • 20 November 1926 (1926-11-20)
Running time
90 minutes (1,850 metres)
CountrySoviet Union

Pudovkin joined Mezhrabpom-Rus film studio in 1925 and, as his first job, was assigned to make a popular science film about Ivan Pavlov's work. The filming started in May 1925 and proceeded for more than a year. The many delays were caused by constant shuttling between the Pavlov's laboratory in Leningrad and the film studio in Moscow as well as difficulties with filming conditioned animals who were easily distracted by the lights and sounds of filming process.

Twenty years later, Pudovkin told an interviewer:

The only significance this first film of mine has is that it made me realize that I could work on my own. Up to then such idea seemed absolutely impossible to me, although Kuleshov assured me that I was fully able to...[4]


  1. ^ Bryher (October 1928). "Six Russian Films – Mechanics of the Brain". Close Up. Pool Group. pp. 27–30.
  2. ^ Ольга Шервуд. "Механика головного мозга". BBC News.
  3. ^ "115 лет со дня рождения Всеволода Пудовкина". Russia-K.
  4. ^ Leyda 1960, p. 206.


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