Sunday, February 7, 2010
¡Qué viva México! is probably one of the more audacious movies done by Eisenstein, which is saying a lot. Eisenstein teamed up with Upton and Mary Sinclair to help fund this chronicle of the Mexican Revolution in1930. Eisenstein became absorbed in his work, as he grew more and more fascinated by the cultural and political milieu of post-revolutionary Mexico. He came in contact with Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera and many others, and eventually shot over 200,000 lineal feet of film before Stalin became curious why Eisenstein was staying so long. In an effort to deflect attention away from himself he apparently blamed Mary Sinclair's younger brother, Hunter Kimbrough, for the delays, prompting the Sinclairs to pull the plug on the project. Still, Eisenstein took his time getting back to the Soviet Union, touring the American South on a "30-day pass" from Texas to New York. Sinclair held onto the film footage, eventually making it into a movie in 1934. It has been released in various forms and under various titles. Here is the first part of the version distributed by an Italian film company.