Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Winnie the Pooh, Soviet Style

Winnie the Pooh and Piglet.

Winnie the Pooh as imagined by the Soviet Union.
One doesn't think of the old Soviet Union as being particularly kind and gentle.

Well, no, it really wasn't.

However, the Soviets did have their gentler side. In fact, it turns out there were fans of A.A. Milne's Winnie the Pooh there even during the darkest days of Communism!

Go figure. Did you know that? I sure didn't. They wouldn't let any Western culture in, not even The Beatles. But Winnie? No problem!

Just for the change of pace and to show that there are different way to present our cherished icons, we present "Adventures of Winnie the Pooh" (SoyuzMultfilm-1969) - part 1 (with English subtitles).

Piglet gets a nice co-starring role in Part 1, while Rabbit gets good air-time in Part 2.

Yes, this is pretty bizarre. It's also pretty fair animation for 1969, though of course archaic by today's standards. The backgrounds look like impressionistic watercolors, which is an interesting effect, obviously hand-painted.

The funniest thing, though, is simply listening to the Pooh-bear talking and singing in gruff Russian. He also has eyes that, to use a colloquialism, make him look baked, and he sounds perpetually tired, as though he needs a good shot of Vodka. There is awesome Russian phrasing and logic that is so genuine that it hurts.

Oh, life is to tough when you fall out of a tree!

I don't know if you will enjoy this, but I find it hilarious - which no doubt was not the reception intended.

Do svidaniya!


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