Sunday, 2 September 2012

Vladimir Petrov : Kutuzov - Кутузов (1943)

Director Vladimir Petrov
Cast: Sergey Blinnikov, Boris Chirkov, Alexey Diky,

Kutuzov (1943)

A historico-biographic film about Mikhail Illarionovich Kutuzov (1745-1813), His Lordship Smolyensky - Russian warlord, General-Field Marshal, the follower of A.V. Suvorov. The film shows the events of the war of 1812.

Story: Napoleon (Semyon Mezhinsky) invades Russia in June of 1812 and quickly gains ground. General Barclay (Nikolai Okhlopkov) abandons Smolensk, causing General Bagration (S. Zakariadze) to denounce him to the Tsar (N. Timchenko) as a traitor. The Tsar calls in General Kutuzov (Aleksei Dikij) to save the homeland. Not long after, Russian troops are gathered around campfires, celebrating the change in command. Barclay was of Scottish descent, and the troops are tired of constantly retreating. Kutuzov is a real Russian, and they are sure his appointment will mean an advance. The next day, the amassed troops cheer wildly as Kutuzov rides past. But to their surprise, Kutuzov continues to pull back until he reaches the village of Borodino. On the day of September 7, 1812, the opposing armies clash on the field of battle near Borodino.

As General Kutuzov sits in a hut reviewing his battle plans, messengers come in from all the generals asking for reinforcements. Kutuzov calmly denies that any reserves are available. After the messengers have left, the Cossack commander asks to send his Cossacks into battle, but Kutuzov tells him that he'll let him know when it is time. Meanwhile, Napoleon sits impassively on a hill overlooking the battle, one leg propped up on a drum. Great masses of soldiers rush through the smoke and explosions one way. Great masses of soldiers rush through the smoke and explosions the other way. Mounted soldiers mass and charge. We catch glimpses of close skirmishes where characters we've come to know from the celebrations when Kutuzov was appointed commander are injured and killed. Russian General Bagration leads a heroic charge against the French, and is mortally wounded.


As repeated assaults by the French army push back the center of Kutuzov's line, Napoleon's generals beg him to send in the Guard, who are being held in reserve, to finish the job. In the meantime, noting the weakness of his line, Kutuzov sends the Cossacks to harass Napoleon's flank. Worrying about the oncoming Cossacks, and fearful of committing the Guard so far from France, Napoleon orders them to stay back, permitting the balance of Kutuzov's army to escape the field. Napoleon is denied a decisive victory.

More here.

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