7.6/10
14,855
127 user 25 critic
During the 1980s, Soviet authorities hunt for a serial killer who picks his victims in railway stations and commuter trains and lures them into the woods.

Director:

Chris Gerolmo

Writers:

Robert Cullen (book), Chris Gerolmo (teleplay)
Reviews
Popularity
2,963 ( 406)

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Won 1 Golden Globe. Another 9 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Stephen Rea ... Lt. Viktor Burakov
Donald Sutherland ... Col. Mikhail Fetisov
Max von Sydow ... Dr. Alexandr Bukhanovsky
Jeffrey DeMunn ... Andrei Chikatilo
Joss Ackland ... Bondarchuk
John Wood ... Gorbunov
Radu Amzulescu Radu Amzulescu ... Federenko
Imelda Staunton ... Mrs. Burakov
András Bálint András Bálint ... Ignatiev
Géza Balkay Géza Balkay ... Procurator
László Váradi Balogh László Váradi Balogh ... Peasant
Zsolt Biro Zsolt Biro ... Older Gay Man
Ion Caramitru ... Tatevsky
Balázs Csapo Balázs Csapo ... Gayy Partner
Imre Csuja Imre Csuja ... Front Detective
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Storyline

Based on the true story of a Russian serial killer who, over many years, claimed over 50 victims, mostly under the age of 17. In what was then a Communist state, the police investigations were hampered by bureaucracy, incompetence and those in power. The story is told from the viewpoint of the detective in charge of the case. Written by Rob Hartill

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

8 years. 52 victims. 1 killer. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong, graphic violence and related language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | Hungary

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 February 1995 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Ciudadano X See more »

Filming Locations:

Hungary See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color (DeLuxe)| Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The characters of Fetisov and Burakov were both real people who investigated the actual Chikatilo killings, yet their ranks and positions were changed in the movie. Historically, Major Mikhail Fetisov was sent from Moscow in order to investigate the killings (in the film he is already in Rostov as a Colonel heading the militia) while Victor Burakov was a civilian forensic expert (in the film he is a Police Lieutenant) assigned by Fetisov to head the investigation. There was no Central Committee comprised of Communist Party and KGB men above the two (this was a plot device created for the film to show Soviet bureaucratic methods) and the main reason why the case took so long was that the investigators interviewed over 150,000 people trying to narrow down who the killer could be. The mistaken release of Chikatilo, and the botched blood-semen test, was accurate as it occurred in the investigation. See more »

Goofs

During most of the movie, Ivanov is introduced and shown as a Colonel. When (after several years) it is decided to make the case somewhat public, Ivanov is addressing troops to watch various train stations. When asking if they understand their job, they respond saying "Yes, General", yet he is still wearing the Colonel epaulets. A scene or two later, he is now shown wearing the General officer epaulet. See more »

Quotes

Burakov: A man is what he fights for.
Fetisov: I don't fight for anything.
Burakov: I know.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The 1995 UK video release was cut by 37 secs by the BBFC to reduce stabbings during the murder scenes. See more »

Connections

References Citizen Kane (1941) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A serious docudrama from HBO
21 October 2002 | by =G=See all my reviews

"Citizen X" tells the story of "The Butcher of Rostov", nickname for a heinous and perverse Russian serial killer who claimed 52 lives from 1978-92. The film focuses on the novice detective (Rea) who doggedly pursued the killer against all odds in the face of an uncooperative bureaucracy in self-serving and convenient denial. An HBO product for t.v., the film offers a solid cast, good performances, spares the audience much of the grisly details, but plays out like a docudrama sans the stylistics of similar Hollywood fare. An even and straight-forward dramatization of a serious and comparatively little known story more interesting than "Jack the Ripper". (B)


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