Alexander Nevsky (1938)
"Aleksandr Nevskiy" (original title)

Not Rated  |   |  Action, Drama, History  |  22 March 1939 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 7,892 users  
Reviews: 85 user | 31 critic

The story of how a great Russian prince led a ragtag army to battle an invading force of Teutonic Knights.


(as S. Eisenstein) , (as D. Vasilyev)


(as S. Eisenstein) , (as P. Pavlenko)
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Complete credited cast:
Aleksandr Nevsky (as N. Cherkasov)
Nikolai Okhlopkov ...
Vasili Buslai (as N. Okhlopkov)
Andrei Abrikosov ...
Gavrilo Oleksich (as A. Abrikosov)
Dmitriy Orlov ...
Vasili Novikov ...
Pavsha - Governor of Pskov (as V. Novikov)
Nikolai Arsky ...
Domash Tverdislavich - a Novgorod Boyar (as N. Arsky)
Varvara Massalitinova ...
Valentina Ivashova ...
Aleksandra Danilova ...
Vasilisa - a Maid of Pskov (as A. Danilova)
Vladimir Yershov ...
Von Balk - Grand Master of the Teutonic Order (as V. Yershov)
Sergei Blinnikov ...
Tverdilo - Traitorous Mayor of Pskov (as S. Blinnikov)
Ivan Lagutin ...
Anani - a Monk (as I. Lagutin)
Lev Fenin ...
The Archbishop (as L. Fenin)
Naum Rogozhin ...
The Black-Hooded Monk (as N. Rogozhin)


It is the 13th century, and Russia is overrun by foreign invaders. A Russian knyaz', or prince, Alexander Nevsky, rallies the people to form a ragtag army to drive back an invasion by the Teutonic knights. This is a true story based on the actual battle at a lake near Novgorod. Written by Gene Volovich <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Action | Drama | History | War


Not Rated | See all certifications »




Release Date:

22 March 1939 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Alexander Nevsky  »

Filming Locations:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


Propaganda 3 anti-German/Nazi: the symbol on the back of the gloves of the Archbishop is reminiscent of both Christian symbolism and of the swastika; some of the Teutonic figures closest to the tent chapel display crossed daggers on their tunics reminiscent of a swastika; many of the Teutonic knights carry flags and shields or wear clothes emblazoned with a figure resembling the imperial German eagle (the coat of arms of the Order of Teutonic Knights also incorporate a similar eagle); the Archbishop bears a minimally disguised swastika on his mitre/ headdress during the battle; many of the Teutonic foot soldiers wear helmets reminiscent of the German army of World War II; the treachery of the knight who kills Master Armourer despite having surrendered to him. See more »


When the request in made for rope to bind the people of Novgorod, the person making the request places himself between the Teutonic Grand Master and the seated religious figure with his front to the crowd. The next scene shows him with his back to the crowd and having moved a little distance from the seated figure. See more »


Vasilisa - a Maid of Pskov: I'm coming with you, father!
Pavsha - Governor of Pskov: Flee from here, Vasilisa! Remember the blood we shed! Avenge us! Avenge us!
See more »


Featured in Red Dawn (1984) See more »

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User Reviews

One of the Finest Battle Scenes Ever filmed
7 May 2002 | by (Los Angeles) – See all my reviews

Eisenstein's "Alexander Nevsky" was made mostly for propaganda purposes in 1938. It was a reminder to all Russians of their dastardly neighbors (the Nazis) to their west. The film plays on this comparison and several others to a lesser degree. The evil Germanic Teutonic Knights just happen to be of the Christian faith and their religious leaders make for very effective villians. Although Nikolai Cherkasov as Nevsky and Nikolai Okhlopkov as his right-hand man, Vasili, are commanding in their roles, this movie is mainly noted for the final climactic battle between good (the Russians) and pure evil (the Germans). Eisenstein purposely covers the Germans with over-sized helmets so that they're totally devoid of any human facial expressions. On the contrary, the Russian peasants who comprise most of Nevsky's army are portrayed with a variety of emotions and their humanity is not only recognizable but refreshing and appealing to the viewer. When the Teutonic Knights make their charge on the Russian position, the action is fast and furious and it would be difficult to find any other film which stages its action scenes as well as Eisenstein does here. Although a bit dated in the print that I saw (the sound was certainly a bit off) this movie is a must-see for anyone interested in foreign films and especially the Russian cinema during the days of Stalin. The Germans might have thought twice about attacking Russia in 1941 if they had seen this film beforehand. The message was clear back then. In the words of Alexander Nevsky himself: "Do not enter Russia with a sword in your hand." Well, you can't say they weren't warned.

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