60 user 37 critic

Ballad of a Soldier (1959)

Ballada o soldate (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, Romance, War | 26 December 1960 (USA)
Young Russian soldier Alyosha earns a medal, but asks to visit his mother instead. His journey recounts various kinds of love during wartime.



(as G. Chukhraj), (as V. Yezhov)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 6 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Pvt. Alyosha Skvortsov (as Volodya Ivashov)
The mother
The general
Evgeniy Urbanskiy ...
Vasya (the invalid)
Elza Lezhdey ...
The invalid's wife (as E. Lezhdej)
Aleksandr Kuznetsov ...
Gavrilkin (the train sentry) (as A. Kuznetsov)
Evgeniy Teterin ...
The lieutenant ('A terrible beast') (as Ye. Teterin)
Valentina Markova ...
Liza (Pavlov's wife) (as V. Markova)
Marina Kremnyova ...
Zoya (neighbor girl) (as M. Kremnnyova)
Vladimir Pokrovskiy ...
Pavlov's invalid father (as V. Pokrovsky)
Sergeant giving bars of soap (as G. Yumatov)
Pvt. Seryozha Pavlov (as G. Yukhtin)
Valentina Telegina ...
Old woman truck driver (as V. Telegina)
Lev Borisov ...
Joking soldier on train (as L. Borisov)


During World War II, 19 year old soldier Alyosha gets a medal as a reward for a heroic act at the front. Instead of this medal he asks for a few days leave to visit his mother and repair the roof of their home. On the train eastwards he meets Shura who is on her way to her aunt. In those few days traveling together they fall in love. Written by Leon Wolters <wolters@strw.LeidenUniv.nl>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

medal | love | mother | soldier | train | See All (43) »


From the very pages of life itself! See more »


Drama | Romance | War


Not Rated | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

26 December 1960 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ballad of a Soldier  »

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


Film debut of Zhanna Prokhorenko. See more »

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User Reviews

This is a most powerful, and positive, statement against war.
29 June 1999 | by (Woodbridge, VA) – See all my reviews

Gregori Chukhrai makes a very powerful, and poignant protest against the horror and futility of war. There is no whining, no accusing, only a very real, and believable, look at the effect that it has on some very ordinary people. People that each of us can relate to. I have to classify this as my all time favorite war movie. If you have a choice, watch it with the Russian language, and subtitles. The warmth is missing in the overdubbed voices, in the dubbed version. Although my Russian is as limited as possible, the emotion that is portrayed by the vocalizations of the actors, is powerful. One is certain to fall in love with either Vladimir Ivashov, or Zhanna Prokhorenko. This is one of those rare films, that each time one watches it, one gleans more from it, and feels that much closer to the film, the director/writer, and to the actors.

45 of 51 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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one of the best war movies ever richsparta
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