CANCELLED – Aelita: Queen of Mars

11 September
Location informationArc Cinema
Event cost$12/$10

Please note: this event has been cancelled while the NFSA is closed to the public, following directives from the ACT Government. Tickets to this event will be refunded; please wait to hear from our staff as they process cancellations. If you purchased tickets for this event in person or over the phone please contact tickets [at]

Russian and Soviet Republic director and screenwriter Yakov Protazanov directed one of the world’s first science-fiction features, Aelita: Queen of Mars in 1924.

Based on a novel by Alexei Tolstoy and produced only 7 years after the Russian Revolution, this silent film employed science-fiction to promote the Communist cause. 

It is also noted for its remarkable constructivist Martian sets and costumes which directly influenced the more famous Metropolis (Fritz Lang, Germany, 1927) and even the much later Flash Gordon (Mike Hodges, USA, 1980). 

Aelita is visually breathtaking and, in many respects, ahead of its time. 

Join us for this special event, featuring a live score by Sydney-based musician Lucy Cliché. Screening from a print restored by the NFSA in 2018.

Our live-scored screening of Aelita was one of the first events we had to cancel going into lockdown in 2020, so we are thrilled to be bringing the film and Lucy Cliché back to Canberra for the grande finale of our Story of Film season! 

‘The extravagant sets and costumes represent the apogee of Russian constructivist screen design’ – Boulder Weekly 



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