Discipline in Russia #27 Dispossession of Kulaks 1 – NETTLES

12 Jun

2M/4f; time: 40 minutes

Part 1 of a little story we can actually understand from the subtitles. Bolshevik soldiers(“Red Comrades”)are pillaging the countryside, taking all the livestock and food, raping the women, and for good measure, whipping them in public.

A farmer, his wife, three daughters, and a Asian female servant hide all their produce. They wear complicated peasant costumes not designed for field work. ‘Ivan’ (actor Jerry Geroshvili, as this subtitler spelled it) and ‘Vladimir’ will deal with this family themselves, especially after they had a look at the girls.

When no one will talk, the four girls are marched into the woods. Frightened faces. Decent theatrics from NETTLES. They assume the servant ‘Ali’ knows as much as the daughters, because “an apple from apple don’t fall far away,’ a mangling of the cliche worth repeating here. The girls are worried too. It seems “red asses are a disease all over the country.”

The girls are ordered to strip naked, which takes some time. The camera pans up and down, and the girls turn around for our pleasure. Brunette daughter ‘Irina’ will be whipped first. She is tied to a tree in a condensed scene. Ivan uses a switch and she screams through about 25 strokes, quivering impressively. No padding against the rough tree bark for her, and we always wonder about mosquitoes, flies, and bees in these bucolic scenes. The other three girls are kneeling naked, watching.

Big switch marks and wild ones. She still doesn’t talk, so she is untied and allowed to crawl to the side. Ready for the next girl.

Redhead ‘Anna’ is next, naked at the tree. She won’t talk, even when the officers tell her ‘Irina’ confessed. The same whipping–someone ties her hair back between strokes. We weren’t bothered, thought it rather erotic. The film will interrupt these punishments and switch to another, and then return.

Shift to an interior scene, in the farmhouse. The officers have the Asian house servant, ‘Ali Lee,’ naked. She also won’t give up the secret on where the grain might be hidden. The naked girl is tied to a bench and given a long birching. A lot of shots of her desperate face.

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