|October, 1928, Sergei Eisenstein
By 1917 the tsarist regime had basically collapsed under the strain of WWI.
Russian industry lacked the capability to arm, equip, and supply its military
forces and famine threatened the larger cities. Tsar Nicholas II, ignored
warnings of social and political unrest, and in February 1917 workers filled
the streets of Pertograd (St. Petersburg), demanding an end to the war and the
removal of the tsar. Nicholas II abdicated on March 2 and a provisional
government took power.
The revolution surprised the working-class parties even though they had called
for it. Only in April, after the return of their exiled leader, Vladimir Ilich
Lenin, did the Bolshevik Party assert itself. Lenin opposed the civil war and
proposed that the party establish a proletarian dictatorship.
On October 24, under the direction of Lenin and Leon Trotsky, the Military
Revolutionary Committee stormed the Winter Palace, completing the revolution
and bringing the Bolsheviks to power.