Doctor Zhivago

This silver screen classic,i in many ways the last of its era,ii was filmed largely in my backyard. “Oh look papa, the Urals” should really have been “Oh look papa, the Rockies.” Those frozen landscape long shots ? Those remote mountain railroad tracks ? Yup, all Alberta.iii

In the highly quotable film, Omar Sharif, using little more than his unblinking, ever-wetted brown eyes, lives out the multi-year story of aristocratic physician, Dr. Zhivago, who finds himself on the wrong side of “The People” as the changing of the guard takes place between the Tsarist Whites and the emerging Soviet Reds during the country’s post-WWI civil war. Zhivago is at once a family man, an extramarital romancer, a skilled professional in his own right, and the classic Deadpan Snarker :

Delegate: (Reviewing Zhivago’s discharge papers) Holy Cross ? What ?
Zhivago: Holy Cross Hospital. It’s on—
Tonya: (interrupting) The Second Reformed Hospital, he means.
Zhivago: Oh. Good. It needed reforming.

In this scene in particular, which depicts Zhivago returning to his former family’s home after it’s been “repurposed” by “The People” to fit thirteen families instead of just his own, his tête-à-têtes with the Soviet Delegates overseeing his the abode calls to mind the very same brand of nonsense currently annoying sensible people throughout the “civilised world,” viz. the “renaming” and “rebranding” of “potentially racialist” buildings, sports teams, companies, etc., including everything from the Woodrow Wilson building to the Washington Redskins and Edmonton Eskimosiv to Wegener’s granulomatosisv in a categorically impossible effort to appease the marauding masses of moo-eyed mongoloids who “just want nice things” and so take it upon themselves to paper over all of creation.

Little do they know – because for them even 2012 is “like, ancient history, dood,” quite despite their vapid and hollow claims of “institutional memory”vi – that they’re really not so very original in their pathetic attempts to make a difference in the world. Really, the lot of them might as well go call the Saudis “wreckers” for looking out for numero uno instead of whatever sympathy pr0n soup du jour the “progressives” are pumping. Oh wait…vii because that’s how your children will grow up big and strong !! By being altruistic mkay !!!1

Anyways, the film’s a classic for a reason.viii Even if it’s highly dramatised love story that skimps as to the true brutality of the Reds,ix the glimpse may well seem embellished to the naïve viewer, even if it’s anything but.

If you haven’t seen Doctor Zhivago, it’s well worth the 3.5 hours, even if it takes you more than one sitting to consume.

___ ___ ___

  1. 1965, directed by David Lean, starring Omar Sharif, Julie Christie, Geraldine Chaplin, Alec Guinness, and Rod Steiger. The film took in $111 mn revenue on a $15 mn budget, giving it almost exactly the same ROI as latter day “popular movies,” except yielding a return in dollars worth something (anything at all, really) while also leaving a high watermark in the art. Fancy that.
  2. An era defined by the likes of Lawrence of Arabia.
  3. And some Finland, it seems.
  4. The local CFL (Americanesque football with 3 downs instead of 4, deeper endzones, and some other tweaks) team.
  5. Please feel free to call it “Granulomatosis with polyangiitis” instead of “Wegener’s granulomatosis” so that my pathologist can more readily drop the ball and not misdiagnose me so much as misconvey the correct diagnosis. Cheers.
  6. To wit :

    pete_d: << Speaking of dumb jooz.
    assbot: Trump’s anti-Muslim plans scramble Republican appeals to Jewish voters | Reuters … ( )

    pete_d: “The Jewish community, collectively, has that institutional memory, and institutional scars from previous events in history where a group based solely on religion was persecuted,” said Lee Cowen, a Republican strategist, adding that Trump was damaging the party. “They are very weary of somebody repeating the same kind of rhetoric but just changing the name of the religion.” << Hey Joopublican, where’s your fucking head ? Blending in and singing koombaya ain’t gonna cut it. Time to find a scapegoat that isn’t you, neh ?
    mircea_popescu: Holy shit they’re doing it backwards. What the fuck is wrong with these people ! If they were after Eastern European votes they’d be going “Support a stronger USG because you as a group have the institutional memory to show what a great idea a soviet union is, and the scars to prove it !” Fucktards. I have no fucking idea how the niggers can stand themselves. It sure as fuck galls me, and I don’t even live there. Here sits Lee Cowen, re-interpreting history for his fellow Jews, according to what Lenin said ? Motherfucker…

  7. pete_d: “Saudi Arabia stood accused on Tuesday of trying to wreck the Paris climate summit in order to protect its future as one of the world’s largest oil producers.” << Wow. ‘Wreck’ is so apt they had to use it twice ! 1st SU, 2nd US. Now the only thing missing is a shiny red star in Bahamas’ (faux)* fur hat and you’d swear you had deja vu.
    mircea_popescu: Lol, “We accuse this guy of trying to survive. HES A WRECKER !” Nuts.
    pete_d: Totally nuts. “Your future is the planet’s future. Your children will survive von luft und liebe !

    ___ ___

    *Because Bahamas can’t afford real fur, he doesn’t “choose not to wear fur because it’s mean to aminals mkay” in the exact same manner and for the exact same reasons that Hindus don’t “choose” to not eat beef.

  8. So too is the soundtrack !
  9. More ambitious students, and those with stronger stomachs, are invited to flesh out their SU history with the Solzhenitsyn’s Gulag Archipelago.

3 thoughts on “Doctor Zhivago

  1. […] clip of Rod Steiger performing this scene here. You may also recall Mr. Steiger as Komarovsy from Doctor Zhivago. […]

  2. […] and drive down labour costs. Couldn’t be. Not like making the first move isn’t “more just,” etc. […]

  3. […] near as resplendent as their home in Cernovitsi, was even still soon appropriated for more “just” uses with the addition of two more bodies into their relatively modest dwelling. Was it […]

Leave a Reply to “What is this magical key to success you smart people have?” | Contravex: A blog by Pete D. Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>