Cut and Paste Approach Once Again


Soviet filmmamkers of seventies and eighties quite often followed the style of Hollywood films in terms of plotline, special effects, etc. For example, Indiana Jones movies were rather frankly imitated by a Soviet-Polish sci-fi film «Klątwa Doliny Węży» (Curse of Snakes Valley), 1987. Such pale imitations were a sign of decadence in Soviet arts and humanities. Bourgeois agents provocateur among Soviet artists successfully undermined rich cultural traditions of the USSR, based on its multiethnic society. They promoted Western pop culture in many fields. Cinema, with its wide reach, was one of the most effective tools in their hands.

As a convincing example of imitative moviemaking, I would like to mention an action-adventure movie «Тайны мадам Вонг» (Secrets of Madame Wong, directed by Stepan Puchinyan, produced by Kazakhfilm Studios, 1986), whose exotic adventures take place in Hong Kong and a Pacific Ocean’s island. When police forces storm a female narcotrafficker’s villa, their shootout with gangsters to some extent resembles iconic scenes from Scarface, 1983. A police officer in this movie sets out for treasure search in order to pay ransom for his grandson, kidnapped by the female narcotrafficker Madame Wong’s henchmen. Doing so, he encounters a Soviet seaman, who becomes his companion to eventually find the treasure in a cave. Such plotline quaintly resembles Romancing the Stone, 1984.

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