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One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich (1970)

Ivan Denisonvich (Tom Courtenay) is a Russian World War II hero captured by the Germans. Upon his return to Russia after the war, and during the Stalinist regime, he is sentenced to 10 ... See full synopsis »


Casper Wrede (as Caspar Wrede)
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »


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Credited cast:
Tom Courtenay ... Ivan Denisovich
Espen Skjønberg Espen Skjønberg ... Tiurin
Alf Malland Alf Malland ... Fetiukov
Frimann Falck Clausen Frimann Falck Clausen ... Senka
Jo Skønberg Jo Skønberg ... Gopchik
Odd Jan Sandsdalen Odd Jan Sandsdalen ... Eino
Torstein Rustdal Torstein Rustdal ... Vaino
James Maxwell ... Captain
Alfred Burke Alfred Burke ... Alyosha
Eric Thompson Eric Thompson ... Tsetzar
John Cording ... Pavlo
Matthew Guinness Matthew Guinness ... Kilgas
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Roy Bjørnstad Roy Bjørnstad
Paul Connell Paul Connell
Sverre Hansen Sverre Hansen


Ivan Denisonvich (Tom Courtenay) is a Russian World War II hero captured by the Germans. Upon his return to Russia after the war, and during the Stalinist regime, he is sentenced to 10 years at hard labor in Siberia for being captured. The film shows one day in his life in the prison camp.

Add Full Plot | Plot Synopsis




G | See all certifications »



UK | Norway



Release Date:

26 November 1970 (Norway) See more »

Also Known As:

En dag i Ivan Denisovitsj' liv See more »

Filming Locations:

Røros, Norway See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:



Color (Eastmancolor)
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Did You Know?


[Ivan is told the Communist Party has decreed the sun reaches zenith one hour after noon.]
Ivan Denisovich: Can they even tell the sun what to do?
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User Reviews

It was just another day
8 April 2012 | by dlp-cbsSee all my reviews

This is not a review (as such) about Ivan Denisovich, more a counter to the comments made by a previous reviewer. I find it unbelievable that Mr. Dabell could complain about the film being boring with, as he puts it, "sparse stretches with barely any dialogue and barely any events begin to tire the viewer." What did Mr Dabell expect? A series of comic sketches, interspersed with some witty banter as the inmates hopped and skipped their way through the snow to their place of work? I saw the film back in the 70s and have not seen it since. It made such an impact on me that I have never forgotten it; I have tried to get a copy for many years, alas without success. I do remember the feeling of utter hopelessness, of futility coming through in the film. Feelings that I'm sure were felt by the actual inmates of such prisons back in those days. Escape was impossible. Where to? Certain death obviously, so any talk of digging tunnels, forging papers and planning escape routes (a la The Great Escape) were a complete waste of time. The film was true to the book and (what's more important in my eyes) true to the spirit of the times about which the book was written. If Mr Dabell found the film boring, maybe he should look to himself, maybe it's because Mr Dabell is a boring person. I would recommend anyone, with a spark of humanity, sit down and watch this film. You won't be disappointed, unless of course you happen to be a complete bore.

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