Hm, old news for me, though (and eager shess lovers in former Yugoslavia).
The film maintined to be "an undiscovered jewel", that is repeteadly re-discovered. 🙂
The director - Pudovkin - is acutally a godfather, father and good uncle of Hollywood-editinng style, it's Pudovkin's theory of editiing that was adopted in Hollywood not that of Eisenstein.
Continuiy - that 's what Pudovkin had invented.
As for the film, it was just a relaxing "etude" for grandmaster Pudovkin, at the time he made it, but it deservedly gained cult-status for several raesons.
- it's a document of great GMs of the time - because it cintains vparts of (lost?) documentary from Mocow tournament.
- it' s a film which uses chess "properly", not just as a symbol for smart people (who are lunatics as mad mathematicians etc.)
- it's a teaching example of film editing