Ballad of a Soldier earned international acclaim during its 1959 release but was beloved nowhere more than in its homeland of Russia. It's easy to see why. Alyosha's (Vladimir Ivashov) journey has all the makings of high adventure, drama, and romance. He has to bribe a fellow soldier just to hop a train to his village, but he also finds solace in the arms of a fellow hitchhiker, Shura (Zhanna Prokhorenko), though it is all too fleeting. At times, it looks like the simple trip home to mom will never be completed.
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There's already an Oscars buzz surrounding this movie.