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Flights in Dreams and in Reality (1983)

Polyoty vo sne i nayavu (original title)
On the eve of his fortieth birthday, a man realizes nothing he has achieved in his life has amounted to very much.


Roman Balayan


Viktor Merezhko


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Oleg Yankovskiy ... Sergey Makarov
Lyudmila Gurchenko ... Larisa Yuryevna
Oleg Tabakov ... Nikolay Pavlovich
Lyudmila Ivanova ... Nina Sergeyevna
Lyudmila Zorina ... Natasha
Elena Kostina ... Alisa
Oleg Menshikov ... Alisa's Friend
Lyubov Rudneva ... Svetochka
Aleksandr Adabashyan ... Sculptor
Nikita Mikhalkov ... Director
Yelena Chernyak Yelena Chernyak ... Switchwoman
Alyona Odinokova Alyona Odinokova ... Masha
Sergei Ivanov ... (as S. Ivanov)
Nadezhda Lagutenko Nadezhda Lagutenko ... (as N. Lagutenko)
Galina Shigayeva Galina Shigayeva ... (as G. Shigayeva)


Sergey is an attractive man approaching forty who is acutely aware that nothing he has achieved during the better part of his life has brought him any satisfaction. His frantic sprints between his work, his lover and his family, and the constant lies he uses to explain his absence, only tighten the noose around his neck. The three days that separate him from his birthday might present an opportunity to change everything, or he might just lose it all instead. Written by X

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Soviet Union



Release Date:

17 January 1983 (Soviet Union) See more »

Also Known As:

Flights in Dreams and in Reality See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Dovzhenko Film Studios See more »
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Technical Specs


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Did You Know?


After Kashtanka (1975) and Biryuk (1978), two films based on classical Russian books, director Roman Balayan remained inactive for several years as he wasn't interested in making communist films he was offered. According to him, 'Polyoty vo sne i nayavu' became the film where he put all the anger and disappointment accumulated in him within these years. See more »

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User Reviews

The self-destructive nature of midlife crisis...
28 May 2018 | by alexeiisramSee all my reviews

I first saw this movie back in the 80's when I still was in my teens. Couldn't possibly understand the subject, but something struck me in Oleg Yankovskiy's performance. His Sergey was recognizable. Even familiar. I saw this man somewhere. Probably in my father, who was going through a little midlife crisis of his own at the time. So Yankovskiy's Sergey was genuine - tragic, lonely, selfish (and self-loathing at the same time), lost man. Looking for love while unable to feel love towards others. Even himself. It's not even love he is after, it's reassurance of his worth. On his self-destructive path he ruins not only his life, but few other's close to him. And you despise him, feel for him, pity him and just wish that he (and those hurt by him) would walk away with least damage possible. The movie is slow, but doesn't drag. The way autumn (literally and symbolically) is translated to the screen does make you feel a little cold. The acting is excellent from all involved with a standouts from Yankovskiy and Lyudmila Gurchenko. 9.5/10

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