The Beilis Case (partially lost Russian silent film; 1917)

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This article has been tagged as NSFL due to its discussions of murder and anti-semitism.


Clippings for the film.

Status: Partially Lost

The Beilis Case (Russian: Процесс Бейлиса aka Vera Chibiryak, or Bloody Libel, The Truth of Beilis Affair, Bloody Libel, The Beilis Affair) is a 1917 Russian silent film that was written and directed by Nikolay Breshko-Breshkovsky.


The film was based on a lawsuit of Menahem Mendel Beilis for the murder of Andrei Yuschinsky, a student of the Kyiv Sophia Theological School, on March 12th, 1911.

The process started in Kyiv on September 23rd, 1913. It was accompanied on the one hand by an anti-semitic campaign, and on the other hand by public protests on an All-Russian and world scale. Beilis was brought into the case without proof, only for the incident in which he kicked a young boy out of a factory and from which the child's corpse was found not far away.

Researchers think that the true murderers are the fence-sitter Vera Chibiryak and the criminals from her brothel, but the question remains unsolved. This case was the most prominent lawsuit in the Russian Empire.


  • Yuri Yakovlev as Menahem Mendel Beilis
  • Stepan Kuznetsov as Investigator Krasovsky
  • Axel Lundin as Dark Person
  • Sergei Tsenin as Valka Ryzhiy, Hooligan
  • Pavel Znachkovsky as Second Hooligan
  • Ivan Kachalov as Lembovetsky
  • Meschersky as Scheglovitov


  • Writer, Director: Nikolay Breshko-Breshkovsky
  • Art Direction: M. Mikhailov, P. Schetinsky
  • Production: Kyiv Studio "Svetoten"


In 1917, the Provisional Board of the Cinema Union banned the screening of the film, considering it to be inadmissible. The film was shown only once on April 25th, 1917 in the Forum cinema. Only three of the five parts have survived.


Three surviving parts of the film.

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