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This section contains information about the representation of phenomena in the entertainment industry: movies, cartoons, books, etc.

The Night Before Christmas


Added Wed, 06/01/2021
Release date
Original title
Ночь передъ Рождествомъ

"The Night before Christmas" (Rus. doref. "The Night before Christmas") - a silent feature film produced in pre-revolutionary Russia, released in 1913 and is an adaptation of the novel of the same name Nikolai Vasilyevich Gogol.

The night before Christmas

N. V. Gogol

Book (fiction)|1832

One of the most famous stories of Gogol, which tells about the adventures of the blacksmith Vakula, for the sake of love, who risked contacting the devil, and, oddly enough, did not lose in this difficult duel

This is the first known film adaptation of the story, which has preserved the letter and spirit of the literary source. In this movie Vladislav Starevich combined acting and animation in one frame: in the scenes with jumping dumplings at Patsyuk and where the Devil is reduced and hides in the pocket of the Vakula.

Due to the fact that in Russia there was a censorship ban on the image (except for special cases) in films of persons from the reigning dynasty, to introduce the role of the empress in the film Catherine II. Starevich failed, so instead of her Tsaritsyn cherevichki Vakula gives Prince Potemkin.

The film is publicly available and posted on YouTube.

The plot as a whole corresponds to the classic story of N. V. Gogol.

On Christmas Eve, the Devil comes to visit the local witch Solokha. They fly together on a broomstick, after which the Devil steals the month and hides it in a rag. Tipsy Cossacks in the coming darkness can not get into the shink and decide to go home. One by one, they come to Solokha, who hides them one by one in bags so that they do not catch each other's eyes – including the Devil. At this time, Solokha's son, the blacksmith Vakula, tries to woo the beautiful Oksana, but she, mocking him, demands that he bring her cherevichki, which the queen herself wears.

The blacksmith in grief goes to Solokha, sees the bags and decides to take them to the forge. Tired on the way, he leaves the heaviest bags on the street, where they are picked up by caroling girls and boys. Vakula, who has only a bag of Devils left, goes to Patsyuk to ask him how he can find the Devil, because only with his help can he get the royal cherevichki.

Patsyuk replies that " there is no need to look for the Devil, who has the Devil behind his back." Vakula finds the Devil in the bag and forces him to carry himself to St. Petersburg. There Prince Potemkin takes him for an ambassador from the Cossacks and gives him the Tsarina's cherevichki.

The devil returns Vakula home and the blacksmith lets him go. Oksana agrees to become Vakula's wife.

Phenomena in artwork: Heck

The devil plays an active role in the plot of the film. It has a classic appearance: horns on the head, fangs, a small body covered with thick dark hair, a long tail, hooves instead of legs. He doesn't wear clothes.

The devil has supernatural abilities: he can fly, steal a month from the sky, create a snowstorm, change the size of his body. He is intelligent and can talk to people.

When he meets Vakula, the devil jumps on the blacksmith's back and wants to ride him. This behavior is often attributed to devils, witches and other representatives of evil spirits.

Phenomena in artwork: Witchcraft

The film shows two sorcerers: the local witch Solokha and the Pot-bellied Patsyuk. They both communicate with devils (about Patsyuk even say that he "knows all the devils"). The witch has the ability to fly on a broom, and Patsyuk-levitate small objects (dumplings themselves fly into the mouth to him and his guest).

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