Based on Lermontov's novel Vadim, this costume drama, set in Russia during the 1700s, chronicles the battle between a vengeful, anarchic peasant and the tyrannical landowner who killed his mother and father.


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Cast overview:
Ray Lovelock ...
Yuri (as Raymond Lovelock)
Irene (as Carol André)
Zora Velcova ...
Giuseppe Pisegna
Paola Tedesco
Adalberto Rossetti
Raffaele Uzzi
Sergio Doria


Based on Lermontov's novel Vadim, this costume drama, set in Russia during the 1700s, chronicles the battle between a vengeful, anarchic peasant and the tyrannical landowner who killed his mother and father.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | History


R | See all certifications »





Release Date:

October 1973 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

One Russian Summer  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


70mm blow-up version released in Spain. See more »


Palizyn: I can't trust any of you.
[to his dog]
Palizyn: They're all liars. You're the only one I can trust. I can trust you.
Vadim: You can trust me
Palizyn: Can I?
Vadim: Oh, yes
Palizyn: We'll see.
[he picks up a stick and throws it]
Palizyn: Fetch that! Dog! No! In the mouth, if you're a dog. In the mouth, if you're a dog. In the mouth!
[he laughs as Vadim brings him the stick held in his mouth]
See more »


Referenced in Harry Saltzman: Showman (2000) See more »

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User Reviews

A tale of pre-Revolutionary Russia: kind of terrible - on many levels
22 October 2002 | by See all my reviews

A depiction of a terribly sad period in human history - a time of woe, oppression, and revenge. To its credit, the movie's settings, costumes, and social culture seem to be very accurately recreated. Social history buffs who want to gain a flavor for this period would probably be quite impressed. Still, for the entertainment seekers among us, historical accuracy doesn't mean attractive or beautiful.

The movie, which is set in pre-revolutionary Russia, portrays the conflicts within a wealthy family, as well as the broader conflicts between Russian serfs and the oppressive ruling class. But, it's difficult to feel that either side in the class conflict is right, as the serfs and renegade Cossacks are as cruel and greedy as their overlords.

It's also difficult for the viewer to care about of the characters -- they are either unhappy and cruel (Palizyn, his wife, and Vadim) or shallow (Uri, and Irene, Palizyn's son and foster daughter). The head of the family, Palizyn, is a landowner and despot. Oliver Reed portrays the many opposing facets of the Palizyn character's personality well -- his cruelty, his affection and love of fun, and his apparent dismay at finding himself in love with his foster daughter. It is, in fact, difficult to hate him as he should be hated for his evil deeds.

Vadim is the secret troublemaker who gains Palizyn's confidence as a trusted servant. I believe he is supposed to be the hero and I think we are supposed to believe his claims. But, the character is so devious and manipulative, that I kept wondering if his story was just a ruse. In any event, he's not very likable as a hero. Not to spoil it, but Vadim's reaction to the debacle in the final scene makes little sense.

I suspect part of the problem with this movie is the uneven direction, which often has the characters behaving inconsistently for the circumstances. Because of the emotional confusion this creates, there is no cathartic release at the end of the movie. You just go away shaking your head and feeling kind of sick.

10 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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