Arseny Bulakov, president of the St. Petersburg Tolkien Society, called the production a “very revealing artifact” of his era: “filmed in a depressed time, without stage settings, gathered from acquaintances of the costumes – and at the same time with great respect With. Love for Tolkien and for his world. “
Mr Bulakov said it reminded him of the “early years of the Tolkinists” in Russia. “Not being paid for half a year, wearing old sweaters, yet he got to talk about hobbies and fanciful dwarfs, rewriting elvish poems by hand, trying to invent what is really It was impossible to know about the world. “
Tolkien’s books were difficult to find in the Soviet Union for decades, until 1976 there was no official translation of “The Hobbit” – “with some conceptual adaptations,” according to Mark Hooker, author of “Tolkien Through Russian Eyes”. But the “Rings” trilogy was “essentially banned” for decades, he said, perhaps because of its religious themes or its portrayal of Western allies uniting against a nomadic power from the east.
In 1982, an authorized and abridged translation of “Fellowship” became a best seller, Mr. Hooker said. The translator began making informal, congruent versions over the years, after which – translating and writing the entire text on its own.
“Khranteli” was aired in a moment of “great systemic upheaval” as the Soviet Union disintegrated, and “a flood of ideas that ran to fill the vacuum,” Mr. Hooker said. “For the average Russian, the world was nauseated.”
Artist Irina Nazarova, who watched the original broadcast in 1991, told BBC That in Retrospect, “a film devoid of incoherent costumes, direction or editing, adornment and acting – it all screams of a country’s downfall.”
Mr. Hooker compared the production to a scintillating translation, “with all the rough edges.” One of them is camouflaged by the camera, as if Fond was filming his trip with a camcorder, and suddenly cuts off a narrator, who is smoking a pipe or smiling quietly, sometimes in the dark. It takes content to leave its audience.