The Beast of War (1988)

R  |   |  War  |  7 September 1988 (France)
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During the war in Afghanistan a Soviet tank crew commanded by a tyrannical officer find themselves lost and in a struggle against a band of Mujahadeen guerrillas in the mountains. A unique ... See full summary »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Konstantin Koverchenko
Khan Taj
Anthony Golikov
Moustafa (as Haim Gerafi)
Shoshi Marciano ...
Sherina (as Shosh Marciano)
Yitzhak Ne'eman ...
Iskandar (as Itzhak Babi Ne'Eman)
Moshe Vapnik ...
Claude Aviram ...
Victor Ken ...
Avi Keedar ...


During the war in Afghanistan a Soviet tank crew commanded by a tyrannical officer find themselves lost and in a struggle against a band of Mujahadeen guerrillas in the mountains. A unique look at the Soviet 'Vietnam' experience sympathetically told for both sides. Written by Keith Loh <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


There is no room in a tank for a conscience. See more »




R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

7 September 1988 (France)  »

Also Known As:

The Beast  »

Filming Locations:

Box Office


$161,004 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The Mujahideen's motorcycles are single cylinder 500cc M20s made by BSA. See more »


The helicopter in the movie was an Aerospatiale Super Frelon, which was never in use with soviet armed forces. However it bears a striking resemblance to the soviet Mil Mi-26 helicopter, therefore it was used as stand-in. See more »


Koverchenko: You're a good soldier Anton. You can be counted on when they ask you to shoot your mother.
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the start of the film, just after the Columbia Pictures logo the following quote is given: When you're wounded an' left on Afghanistan's plains. An' the women come out to cut up your remains, Just roll to your rifle an' blow out your brains, An' go to your Gawd like a soldier. - Rudyard Kipling See more »


Referenced in Syphon Filter 3 (2001) See more »


Written by VICTOR TSI
Performed by KINO
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

One Of History's Unsung Greatest Movies
21 October 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

My son found this movie, by serendipitous accident, in the $5.50 bin at Wal*Mart in vast abundance; Since viewing it, I've bought ten copies and given them to friends as gifts; Nine out of ten found it 'WOW!', and one 'really liked it'. It is simply that good.

Kevin Reynolds, along with the cast he 'enlisted' for this movie, has done what very few others in Hollywood have: Glued their viewer's butts firmly to their seats. In spite of trivial critique fielded, the movie is nonetheless a riveting, tachycardia-inspiring, sweat-inducing commentary of the inhumanities of war and the torment it invokes upon all involved. Dzundza, Patric and Bauer, although lesser-known among the 'gods' of Hollywood and together with a cast of very capable unknowns, have conspired to make a high-calibre testament to the evil of war and the resiliency of life and spirit in war's midst.

Others may fault the movie as they will: Soviet tankers with American accents, incorrect tank, inaccurate terminology, made in Israel, et al; The plot outshines all that. There is nothing thin about it. Consequently, I cannot recommend this film enough. You will not be sorry if you decide to buy this DVD; However, if you like the soundtrack (Tastefully done by Mark Isham), good luck finding it in CD, especially new. It's been long out of print and very rare, commanding prices often over $100, mint (I got mine for $50, luckily! Check eBay, keywords: 'beast isham soundtrack'). "The Beast" (Titled "The Beast Of War" overseas) is a MUST for any collection!

(EDIT) fairviewed's review comment of Osama bin Ladin being trained by the US is unfounded and purely conjecture. There is no evidence to support the claim, and should thus be regarded as urban legend.

33 of 37 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Now, imagine an American tank, businka
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