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Ivan the Terrible, Part II: The Boyars’ Plot
This is the second part of a projected three-part epic biopic of Russian Czar Ivan Grozny, undertaken by Soviet film-maker Sergei Eisenstein at the behest of Josef Stalin. Production of the epic was stopped before the third part could be filmed, due to producer dissatisfaction with Eisenstein’s introducing forbidden experimental filming techniques into the material, more evident in this part than the first part. As it was, this second part was banned from showings until after the deaths of both Eisenstein and Stalin, and a change of attitude by the subsequent heads of the Soviet government. In this part, as Ivan the Terrible attempts to consolidate his power by establishing a personal army, his political rivals, the Russian boyars, plot to assassinate him.