Director: Viacheslav Kotenochkin
Release Date: 1967
Its chapters are all conceived in the same order: first we see animated capitalist predict something, then we see a giant Soviet blacksmith strike his mighty hammer and finally we see live action footage of the Soviet Union’s successes.
The separate chapters are the Soviet revolution, the civil war, the five year plans, the Second World War, the reconstruction after the war and the Soviet space program. The action is silent, and the imagery rather outdated (more like that of the 1920s than of the 1960s).
‘Prophets and Lessons’ is one of the most obviously propagandistic animation films ever made in the Soviet Union. Its overtly propagandastic message, its repetitive character, and its outdated symbolism make it rather tiresome to watch.
Surprisingly, two years later, the director of this humorless film, Viacheslav Kotenochin, would launch a successful series of comic cartoons, called ‘Ну, Погоди!’ (Just Wait!), featuring a very cartoony wolf.
Watch ‘Prophets and Lessons’ yourself and tell me what you think: