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Trial on the Road (1971)

Proverka na dorogakh (original title)
The Russian POW joins the partisan guerrillas and proves his loyalty fighting the Nazis.

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Cast

Cast overview:
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Ivan Egorovich Lokotkov
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Igor Leonidovich Petushkov
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Alexander Ivanovich Lazarev
...
Victor Mikhailovich Solomin
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The Old Mine-Layer - Erofeich
Anda Zaice ...
Inga - the partisan-interpreter (as Anda Zaytse)
Gennadi Dyudyayev ...
Dmitry Mit'ka - a young partisan
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An unhopeful woman-villager
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The young auxiliary policeman
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Kutenko - an auxiliary police watchman
Yuriy Dubrovin ...
Col. Bolshakov - 'lieutenant Genka'
Igor Klass ...
The Partisan-Estonian
N. Pokorsky
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Storyline

Film is set in the winter of 1942 during the Nazi occupation of Russia in WWII. Partisan guerrillas, headed by Ivan Lokotkov, are testing the POW Lazarev, who briefly collaborated with the Nazis for survival. Lazarev is not executed, but instead he is given a chance to prove his loyalty. He has to go back to the Nazi controlled railway station, where everyone knows him, and to hijack a train with food supplies. Lazarev proves himself a hero. Written by Steve Shelokhonov

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Genres:

Drama | War

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Release Date:

October 1986 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Trial on the Road  »

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Trivia

The film was banned in the Soviet Union for 14 years and released only in 1985. See more »

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User Reviews

 
A war film less about war and more about choices
1 November 2012 | by (Israel) – See all my reviews

Despite its age, this is a very good film. The story of the Russian and Ukrainian soldiers who defected to the German side to fight with General Vlasov against the hated Bolsheviks has not been shown in many films, so this one is a welcome addition.

Some reviewers have puzzled over the question why the film's distribution was held up for 14 years, made in 1971 and released only in 1985. The answer seems fairly obvious: this is a political film, which is not shy about showing NKVD officers in a less-than-flattering light. Furthermore, while patriotic, it stresses the human and personal aspects of life and it is almost Christian in its theme of crime and redemption. 1971 USSR under Brezhnev what still not ready for those ideas, hence the hold-up.

While the acting is fairly wooden by modern western standards, the dialogue rings true but the real appeal lies in the breathtaking cinematography, showing the wintry expanses of Russia in an almost palpable way, so much so that the viewer can almost feel the cold wind blowing.

For WW2-films buffs and for students of Soviet cinema this film is a must, but others interested in stories about humanity, redemption and moral choices will benefit from viewing it as well.


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