Two young scientists are exploring new fields of nuclear physics. Dmitry Gusev and Ilya Kulikov are good friends, but rivals in love. Dmitry marries Lyolya and they live happily together. ... See full summary »
Ilya Semenovich Melnikov is a history teacher in an ordinary Soviet high school. He is a very good teacher and his students and colleagues treat him with a great deal of respect. However, ... See full summary »
In a freezing cold World War II winter, two pro-Soviet partisans - Sotnikov and Rybak - head off to find food for themselves and their compatriots. They find a goat at the home of a German ... See full summary »
In July 1942, in the Second World War, the rearguard of the Red army protects the bridgehead of the Don River against the German army while the retreating soviet troops cross the bridge. ... See full summary »
Late for the last commuter train and reluctant to spend the night outdoors, two young men trick a family into letting them stay in their apartment: one of them insists that he's the illegitimate son of the man who owns the apartment.
To the young lieutenant Maleshkin the war is a minor obstacle, if compared to his personal battle to command his subordinates, while conducting an armored vehicle at the same time he's ... See full summary »
During WWII in a small village outpost, a commander has his troop replaced by an all female unit. As they finally begin to appreciate one another, German paratroopers are spotted nearby and the realities of war emerge.
The story of a man (Andrey Sokolov) whose life was ruthlessly crippled by World War II. His wife and daughters were killed during the bombing of his village, he spent some time as a ... See full summary »
Bizarre mix of analytic documentary and anti-Western propaganda
This 1965 documentary by Mikhail Romm is an excellent example of the special position of film directors in the former Soviet Union, who didn't have to succumb to the economic hardships typically imposed on art by Western market economies. However, the film implicitly reveals the political interventions under which all art suffered under the Soviet system. On the one hand, Romm displays a strong and original will to educate mankind in a Soviet style sense of humanism, which by today's standards appears to be rather naive, if not outright ridiculous. On the other hand the documentary simply brushes aside important historical events in order to (over-)emphasize the undeniable contributions of the Red Army and of Soviet society in general to overthrowing fascism in the Great Patriotic War. There is no mention of 1939's Soviet-German Non-Aggression Pact, in which Hitler and Stalin divided Polish territory amongst themselves like pieces of pie, no word about the willingness of many Soviet citizens to collaborate with the Nazis because of overwhelming Russian dominance in the USSR, nothing about the fact that Britain's RAF was the only power providing successful military resistance to the Nazi war machine in 1940/41, and the decisive invasion of Normandy is not considered either. The whole war is painted as a primarily Soviet affair. The depiction of US marines as the fascist hordes of the Cold War really puts the icing on the cake, as it puts Americas's troops in the same line with some of world history's most appalling war crimes, for the apparent propagandistic benefits. However, Romm's approach is interesting insofar as it combines the analysis of fascism with sarcastic comments uncovering at least the nature of Hitler's bestial tyranny. However, most of these comments are rather common-place, such as alluding to Goerings plump figure or Hitler's obsessions with dogs and so on. This movie is not a must, but despite its obvious propagandistic tendency it provides the viewer with some interesting insights - not only about the causes of fascism, but also about the nature of Soviet dictatorship as well.
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