THE DEVIL’S SEED
Directed by Algimantas Puipa
1980’ / Lithuanian Film Studio
Cast: Kostas Smoriginas, Eugenija Pleškytė, Vytautas Paukštė, Inesa Saulite, Bronius Talačka, Algirdas Paulavičius, Algirds Latėnas, Algirds Latėnas ir kt.
About the film:
Algimantas Puipa’s The Devil’s Seed (1980) already shows the distinctive features of the then still emerging director’s style – a strong focus on the visual, his liking of surreal details, his ability to combine the psychological acting of actors and a unique vision of the world.
At first glance, this film may appear as a typical Soviet-era Lithuanian picture that grew out of the tradition of depicting the interwar-period Lithuanian village as an arena of class struggles, exploitation and lawlessness. The author of the script, Vytautas Žalakevičius, who freely interpreted the prose of Petras Cvirka in writing it, did not renounce the familiar characters – lack-all serfs and greedy, cruel kulaks. However, here it is only the point of departure: the protagonists of The Devil’s Seed will go much further than the scheme allows, and Žalakevičius and Puipa will give the story about a “love child” Jonis (Kostas Smoriginas) unexpected twists and turns. This is what makes The Devil’s Seed stand out as not yet another drama about the countryside but an auteur’s film, a contemplation on human nature, perhaps even a reflection on the Lithuanian mentality.