This story could work even today as Norway is going through it's own Chess Fever these last years (due to having the World Champion Magnus Carlsen). This Russian comedic short has some similarities of the best that Keaton and Chaplin offered at the time and the basic premise is original. The filming of Chess heroes border on Russian propaganda though as the camera lovingly get them to pose and smile for it.
It lacks the typically adventurous montage sequences of the Soviet school, yet this is a magnificent little story about dialectical movement. The initial standpoints of the young man and his fiancée, as each is absorbed into their particular goals, (chess, love respectively) get eventually reconciled in a vibrant city, marked by the power of chance and contingency. A very funny film of gags, uniting brain and heart.
Aesthetically interesting, in some points an avant-garde use of montage and recording techniques. A funny commedy at the end but there isn't an original approach to telling the story. Seems to be like a classic American comedy movie of that time in terms of content.
Wildly entertaining silent short from directors Pudovkin (Storm Over Asia) and Shpikovsky that revels in a comedic portrayal of a young couple being kept apart by.....chess? Full of wonderful sight gags and perfectly timed at a breezy 25 minutes. Best in show has to be the baby and the flyer.
The primary take-away from this not-very-funny little comedy (which is also not particularly inventive in its montage, despite the pedigree of its formalizers) is that the stupidities of the quotidian obsessions of regular citizens have never been particularly unforgivable nor likely to produce much amusement in those who do not possess a kind of easy and blithe fondness for their own illusions of superiority.