Nine Days of One Year
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Directed by Mikhail Romm
Written by Mikhail Romm and Daniil Khrabrovitskii. Cinematography by German Lavrov. Art direction by Georgii Kolganov. Music by Dzhon Ter-Tatevosian. With Aleksei Batalov, Innokentii Smoktunovskii, Tat'iana Lavrova, and Nikolai Plotnikov.
In Russian with English subtitles
During experiments at an
institute for nuclear physics, a young scientist, Gusev, receives a dangerous
dose of radiation. At his own risk, he decides to continue the experiments,
which could lead to a ground-breaking discovery, but also to his death. The
road of scientific prometheanism he has chosen to follow makes him a stranger
in his own home and marriage. The existential challenge Gusev faces is
compounded by an ethical dilemma of universal significance: what is the
meaning of his sacrifice in a world that uses nuclear power for
Director Mikhail Romm (1901-1971) belongs to the generation of filmmakers who came to cinema on the wave of the grandiose social transformations of the first quarter of the 20th century. Among his most acclaimed films are Lenin in October and Lenin in 1918 (1937-39), and The Russian Question (1948). In 1961 Romm released Nine Days of One Year, the film that became a revelation of the 'Thaw' generation. In 1965 he shot the documentary Ordinary Fascism, which was an attempt to provide an answer to the question of why the 20th century had given birth to this appalling phenomenon. The film shook the world. During the Thaw Romm taught at the All-Union State Filmmaking Institute. Such directors as Andrei Tarkovskii and Marlen Khutsiev came from his workshop. Romm did not live to finish his second major film about the 20th century And Still I Believe, which was completed by his disciples.