Burnt by the Sun (1994)
"Utomlyonnye solntsem" (original title)

R  |   |  Drama, History, War  |  21 April 1995 (USA)
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Ratings: 8.0/10 from 10,709 users  
Reviews: 74 user | 28 critic

Russia, 1936: revolutionary hero Colonel Kotov is spending an idyllic summer in his dacha with his young wife and six-year-old daughter Nadia and other assorted family and friends. Things ... See full summary »



(dialogue), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Oleg Menshikov ...
Marusya (as Ingeborga Dapkunayte)
Nadezhda Mikhalkova ...
Nadya (as Nadya Mikhalkova)
Vyacheslav Tikhonov ...
Vsevolod Konstantinovich
Svetlana Kryuchkova ...
Vladimir Ilin ...
Alla Kazanskaya ...
Lidiya Stepanovna
Nina Arkhipova ...
Elena Mikhaylovna
Avangard Leontev ...
André Oumansky ...
Filipp (as Andre Umanskiy)
Inna Ulyanova ...
Olga Nikolaevna
Lyubov Rudneva ...
Vladimir Ryabov ...
Ofitser NKVD
Vladimir Belousov ...
Sotrudnik NKVD


Russia, 1936: revolutionary hero Colonel Kotov is spending an idyllic summer in his dacha with his young wife and six-year-old daughter Nadia and other assorted family and friends. Things change dramatically with the unheralded arrival of Cousin Dmitri from Moscow, who charms the women and little Nadia with his games and pianistic bravura. But Kotov isn't fooled: this is the time of Stalin's repression, with telephone calls in the middle of the night spelling doom - and he knows that Dmitri isn't paying a social call... Written by Michael Brooke <michael@everyman.demon.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

nkvd | soviet | 1930s | hero | friend | See All (36) »


The unexpected arrival of an old flame brings about the sudden destruction of a happy family. See more »


Drama | History | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some language and sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:





Release Date:

21 April 1995 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Burnt by the Sun  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$2,800,000 (estimated)


$85,218 (Argentina)

Company Credits

Production Co:

, ,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?


Songs used were from the works of the following songwriters: B. Kornilov, V. Lebediev-Koumatch, A. Jarov, V. Schmidtof, P.Guerman, I. Alvek (from credits). See more »


Followed by Utomlennye solntsem 2 (2011) See more »


Can Can
Written by Jacques Offenbach
Played by Mitya on the piano
See more »

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User Reviews

Powerful yet Subtle and Original Look at Totalitarianism
15 October 2001 | by (New York, New York) – See all my reviews

I just watched and loved this movie.

It originally portrays the contrast in character, personality, viewpoint, and the relative consequences of the Revolution upon two people -

a) Mitya, a handsome, charming, romantic, poetic, musical, child-loving man who before the movie began, lived in rural Russia, grew up with a girl who was 7 when he was conscripted into World War I, and deeply loved her parents, cousins, aunts, uncles and the household servants, and

b) Kotov, an older man, military, probably more courageous and less intelligent, bluff and physical, sentimental and less artistic, stronger but simpler, equally child-loving, from a poorer background.

Enemies in the Revolution, their behavior toward each other begins with cruelty by Kotov toward Mitya, Mitya's forced cruelty to others, and a changed and cruel man now (and knowing it) Mitya's cruelty to Kotov. And yes, a woman is also in the mix. The story is told as much through Kotov's eyes as through Mitya's.

And guess what? With all this cruelty, Kotov and Mitya are both people you'd love to spend the day with.

It's beautifully photographed - the same wonderful languor as watching say, Turgenev's A Month in the Country, the child is enchanting, the story is absolutely fascinating - far more original than such other "political" movies as The Conformist or The Garden of the Finzi-Continis. The movie is about social class, temperament, and how freely people make decisions in their lives, about love for the opposite sex, children, and country. It's compelling - you will truly always remember this movie.

21 of 27 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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