When the Toronto International Film Festival commissioned a number of filmmakers to create a short work to be played before various feature-length films at the 2000 fest, Canadian auteur Guy Maddin produced The Heart Of The World, a wonderful little force of a movie that draws upon Russian constructivist and Soviet montage aesthetics to channel Maddin’s signature silent-film style into a lightning-fast piece of cinematic propaganda.

Propelled by Georgy Sviridov’s musical score from Time, Forward!, the story centers around the conflict between two brothers – one a mortician, the other an actor – who are in love with the same woman, a scientist trying to prevent the end of the world (seeing as the Earth’s core has become susceptible to a “heart attack”).

The video embedded above contains the extended six-minute cut of the film.