Walker Art Center

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Aelita: Queen of Mars

Directed by Yakov Protazanov

Before Fritz Lang’s Metropolis, there was the dramatic sci-fi brilliance of Protazanov’s Aelita: Queen of Mars. Wrought with subtle erotic tensions and national predilections of the moment, the Martian adventure is known for its incredible leaps of fantasy running parallel to documentary-style depictions of 1920s Moscow. Love crosses light years in this popular Russian classic, presented in a rare 35mm print from the Walker’s Ruben/Bentson Film and Video Collection.

Composer Dennis James returns to the Walker with collaborator Mark Goldstein, known as the Filmharmonia Duo, performing with unusual historical instruments—including a theatrical organ and a theremin—to accurately capture the essence of the unique film for this rare event. 1924, 35mm, 105 minutes.


Major support to renovate the Walker Art Center’s Cinema and to preserve and digitize the Ruben/Bentson Film and Video Study Collection is generously provided by the Bentson Foundation.

Sound system provided by