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The Idiot (1958)

Idiot (original title)
Upon Prince Myshkin's return to St. Petersburg from an asylum in Switzerland, he becomes beguiled by the lovely young Aglaya, daughter of a wealthy father. But his deepest emotion is for ... See full summary »


Ivan Pyrev (as Ivan Pyryev)


Fyodor Dostoevsky (novel), Ivan Pyrev (as Ivan Pyryev)
1 nomination. See more awards »


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Complete credited cast:
Yuriy Yakovlev ... Prince Myshkin
Yuliya Borisova ... Nastasia Philippovna
Nikita Podgorny ... Ganya Ivolgin
Vera Pashennaya Vera Pashennaya ... General's wife
Nikolai Pazhitnov Nikolai Pazhitnov ... General Yepanchin (as N.Pazhitnov)
Sergey Martinson ... Lebedev (as Sergei Martinson)
Leonid Parkhomenko ... Parfen Rogozhin
Emmanuil Geller
Raisa Maksimova ... Aglaya Yepanchina (as Raya Maksimova)
Vladimir Muravyov ... Ferdishchenko (as V. Muravyov)
Ivan Lyubeznov ... General Ivolgin (as I. Lyubeznov)
Grigoriy Shpigel
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Lyudmila Ivanova Lyudmila Ivanova ... Varya Ivolgina
Klavdiya Polovikova ... Nina Alexandrovna Ivolgina
P. Strelin P. Strelin ... Totsky


Upon Prince Myshkin's return to St. Petersburg from an asylum in Switzerland, he becomes beguiled by the lovely young Aglaya, daughter of a wealthy father. But his deepest emotion is for the wanton, Nastasia. The choices all are forced to make lead to great tragedy. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A major work of Dostoyevsky... See more »




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Soviet Union



Release Date:

21 July 1960 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Idiot See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Mosfilm See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Sovcolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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Version of Idiot (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

A masterpiece of film-making that reveals the depths of human psychology.
31 July 2017 | by khanbaliq2See all my reviews

Some people have been asking me what I think about the summer movies that have been put out in the last few months. Therefore, this is what this post will be about. I haven't been making any film-related videos lately. My videos of late are mostly about culture and sociology, and not about film or anything else. But I still go to the cinema once in a while, mostly to see the special effects featured in Hollywood films. I've read a few articles on the net that state that this year's summer movies are disappointing, that, overall, it hasn't been a blast for moviegoers this summer. Well, I can agree and disagree. Almost all of the films that I've seen this summer are entertaining. But, then again, I haven't seen that many films this summer. I think that Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales is the best film in the franchise since Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl. Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides is in third place for me, and I don't want to see Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest and Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End again. Spider-Man: Homecoming is pretty good. It's certainly not the best Spider-Man film ever, as some people have been (suspiciously) saying. It's in third place for me, after Spider-Man 2 (2004) and Spider-Man (2002). Other 2017 summer movies that I consider to be pretty good are Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Kong: Skull Island, Wonder Woman, The Fate of the Furious, Baywatch, and Baby Driver. Now, I don't mean that these films are masterpieces. They're just fine. They entertained me. I didn't mind seeing them one time in a theater. They are, of course, nothing like Apocalypse Now (1979) or The Idiot (1958), for example. By the way, The Idiot by director Ivan Pyryev is one of the best films that I have seen in a long time. What a shame that this magnificent Soviet film doesn't get any recognition in the West because of ideological and political reasons. It should be as well known as War and Peace by director Sergei Bondarchuk. The cinematography is gorgeous and the acting is superb. This is easily the best film adaptation of Fyodor Dostoyevsky's works. The Idiot is highly recommended by me. The Brothers Karamazov is the only Dostoyevsky novel that I've read so far. But, after seeing the 1958 film adaptation of The Idiot, I now have an urge to read the novel. Anyway, when it comes to this year's summer movies, there have also been some disappointments, like The Mummy and Alien: Covenant. So, overall, it has been an average, and not a bad, summer movie season, in my opinion. Nothing truly great like Mad Max: Fury Road (2015) or Dredd (2012) has been released so far this year. Good films like these are rare now. It seems to me that the number one goal of Hollywood film studios now is to make films that are first and foremost entertaining and that feature many special effects, in order to draw in crowds of people. Even the not so good films now are entertaining. The number two goal is propaganda. And quality is only in third place or lower. I think that I've already made a post about the fact that Hollywood has been releasing unoriginal and dumb films for about three decades already. But pretty much everything has gone down in quality and originality in the USA in the last several decades. It's not that all Hollywood films are bad now. Some of them are still good, if not great. It's just that there's nothing new. There's no originality. There's no inventiveness. So, as a sentient organism, and not as one of the sheeple, I have to say that things s*ck, which is a phrase that Americans often use. I should mention that I did see one film not long ago that's not that good but that's still daring and kind of original. It's The Space Between Us (2017) by director Peter Chelsom. Watch it until the end, and I think that you'll be surprised by how old-fashioned, daring, and sweet it is. Another thing worth mentioning is that I saw Rogue One (2016), which is the second Star Wars film made by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, after it came out on video. It is, as I expected, rather dull. I don't want to see it again. It disappointed me even more than Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015). There are only two moments in Rogue One that stood out for me - when Galen Erso delivers an emotional message to his daughter, Jyn Erso, about the Death Star, and when Chirrut Imwe, who's a blind warrior, gets a bag put over his head. One of the few directors working in Hollywood who can film science-fiction well is James Cameron. I heard somewhere that Cameron read many science-fiction novels when he was growing up. If this is true then this must be one of the reasons why he's good at filming science-fiction. Still, his latest film, Avatar (2009), didn't impress me much. Some parts of Avatar are inspired, but, overall, it's not great. Cameron is clearly getting old, and making an original film in Hollywood is difficult now anyway. Lack of originality isn't the only problem with Hollywood films. Another important problem is poor characterization. This comes down to scripts and acting. There's a serious shortage of appealing and interesting characters in Hollywood films now, and not just in summer blockbusters. Those dull, medium and low budget Hollywood dramas and romances feature unappealing characters too. If you want to see good characterization, see The Idiot (1958) as an example. That film puts Hollywood films, and especially summer blockbusters, to shame.

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