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Avalanche Express (1979)

PG  |   |  Action, Thriller  |  19 October 1979 (USA)
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Ratings: 4.7/10 from 871 users  
Reviews: 15 user | 10 critic

Soviet KGB General Marenkov defects to the Americans and together with his CIA handler Harry Wargrave they plan an operation meant to reveal the KGB agents in Europe.


, (uncredited)


(screenplay), (novel)
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Col. Harry Wargrave
Gen. Marenkov
Elsa Lang
Col. Nikolai Bunin
Joe Namath ...
Julian Scholten (as Horst Bucholz)
Claudio Cassinelli ...
Col. Molinari
Kristina Nel ...
Helga Mann
Günter Meisner ...
Rudi Muehler (as Günter Meissner)
Sylva Langova ...
Olga (as Sylvia Langova)
Cyril Shaps ...
Vladek Sheybal ...
Zannbin (as Vladets Shebal)
Arthur Brauss ...


When a senior Russian official, Gen. Marenkov, decides to defect to the west, CIA agent Harry Wargrave is sent to lead the team to get him out. Malenkov reveals that the Russians are trying to develop biological weapons. Wargrave decides that Malenkov should travel across Europe by train, on the "Atlantic Express", in an attempt to try and lure the Russians into attacking the train so that they can discover who the Russian secret agents in Europe are. During the journey they must survive terrorist attack and an avalanche, all planned by Russian spy-catcher Nikolai Bunin. Written by Matt <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The Fast Track For All-Star Adventure.


Action | Thriller


PG | See all certifications »






Release Date:

19 October 1979 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Avalancha Express  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$12,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The film casts two actors from another famous espionage train movie, From Russia with Love (1963). These were actors Robert Shaw and Vladek Sheybal. The movie was made and released about sixteen years after From Russia with Love (1963). See more »


During the avalanche scene, the train driver is seen attempting to accelerate the train out danger. However the speedometer is reading zero. See more »


Referenced in Cameraman: The Life and Work of Jack Cardiff (2010) See more »

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User Reviews

Dreadful espionage thriller.
17 October 2003 | by See all my reviews

From the hilariously overdubbed Russian dialogue (in the very first scene to boot; what a great way to start your movie!) to the badly miscast actors (Maximilian Schell as a top Russian official???) and from the unexciting action scenes (full of inept bad guys who can't shoot straight) to the trite "May-December" romance between Lee Marvin and Linda Evans, "Avalanche Express" demonstrates how easy it is to screw everything up in this genre. In its defense, it's not as awful as, say, "The Kremlin Letter"; there is also some good on-location shooting in Europe. Despite the title, the "avalanche" part of the movie doesn't take up more than five minutes. (*)

4 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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