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Ivan's Childhood (1962)

Ivanovo detstvo (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, War | 27 June 1963 (USA)
In WW2, twelve year old Soviet orphan Ivan Bondarev works for the Soviet army as a scout behind the German lines and strikes a friendship with three sympathetic Soviet officers.

Directors:

Andrei Tarkovsky (as Andrey Tarkovskiy), Eduard Abalov (uncredited)

Writers:

Vladimir Bogomolov (story "Ivan") (as V. Bogomolov), Vladimir Bogomolov (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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2 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Nikolay Burlyaev ... Ivan Bondarev (as Kolya Burlyaev)
Valentin Zubkov ... Leonid Kholin (as V. Zubkov)
Evgeniy Zharikov ... Galtsev (as Ye. Zharikov)
Stepan Krylov ... Katasonov (as S. Krylov)
Nikolay Grinko ... Gryaznov (as N. Grinko)
Dmitri Milyutenko ... Old Man (as D. Milyutenko)
Valentina Malyavina ... Masha (as V. Malyavina)
Irina Tarkovskaya ... Ivan's Mother (as I. Tarkovskaya)
Andrey Konchalovskiy ... Soldier with glasses (as A. Konchalovskiy)
Ivan Savkin ... (as I. Savkin)
Vladimir Marenkov ... (as V. Marenkov)
Vera Miturich ... Girl
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Storyline

During World War II, 12-year old Ivan works as a spy on the eastern front. The small Ivan can cross the German lines unnoticed to collect information. Three Soviet officers try to take care of this boy-child. Written by Mattias Thuresson

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Soviet Union | Ukraine

Language:

Russian | German

Release Date:

27 June 1963 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Ivan's Childhood See more »

Filming Locations:

Dnieper River, Kanev, Ukraine

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$11,537, 15 September 2002

Gross USA:

$22,168

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$55,099
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie was based on a short story "Ivan" by Vladimir Bogomolov. Andrei Tarkovsky wrote in his book "Sculpting in Time" later that he did not find the book very good, but stories that were not well written were easier to adapt into films. See more »

Goofs

In the famous "Well Scene" Ivan's mother says "If A well is too deep you can see a star in it even in the day time". While speaking she is standing on the left hand side of Ivan but when their reflection is shown in water she is standing on the right hand side. Lateral Inversion has not been depicted correctly. Please have a look. See more »

Quotes

Ivan: Mamma, there's a cuckoo up there!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Revenant (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Ne velyat Mashe
[Song played on the gramophone. English translation: "Masha is not allowed beyond the river".]
See more »

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User Reviews

A childhood like no other.
2 February 2000 | by Gary-161See all my reviews

Tarkovsky appeared dismissive of this, his first feature, saying it was the sort of project dreamed up in film school pool halls. It was not a film he himself instigated, but it cannot for a moment be described as uncommitted or pedestrian. It most closely resembles some of the other 'names' in purely artistic cinema of the day in terms of formal style, Tarkovsky having not at that point worked out his own unique and so far inimitable 'style', if that's the right word. The dream sequence with the apples, though brilliantly done, seems derivative. He never used optical flourishes like that again.

Tarkovsky believed a great deal of editing for the audience was vulgar and inimitable to great art, but this film is quite structured and conventional compared to his later slower and arguably more obscure works. The key performance comes from Ivan himself, a fine effort from one so young, and indeed Tarkovsky used him again in the bell section of Andrei Rublev; although he used rather harsh methods to get the performance he wanted in that case. Obviously influenced by Dreyer, you see the beginnings of Andrei's obsession with water and it's reflective calm around more tempestuous events. His use of black and white stock in terms of lighting is exemplary.

The film's title is ironic as Ivan does not have a childhood, but the films majestic and moving final shot suggests that Ivan does receive a kind of immortality beyond the bleak finality of his discovered photo in Berlin, that the Russian spirit itself cannot be stifled and will ultimately run free.


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