Nebo Zovyot

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Nebo Zovyot it’s a science fiction film Soviet 1959 directed by Mikhail Karzhukov and Alexander Kozyr. The plot of the film takes place during the Cold War and follows a group of Soviet cosmonauts who attempt to reach the moon before the Americans. The film is notable for being one of the first to depict space travel in cinema, and it had a significant impact on the popular culture of the Soviet Union.

The film was made with an impressive visual style, with innovative special effects for the time, such as the use of miniature models to represent space ships. Furthermore, it was shot in widescreen and with stereo sound, which made it technically advanced compared to other films of the time.

“Nebo Zovyot” was well received by critics and audiences both at home and abroad, winning numerous international awards. It also inspired a number of later Soviet science fiction films, which continued to explore the themes of space conquest and the rivalry between the superpowers during the Cold War.




The plot of “Nebo Zovyot” follows a group of Soviet cosmonauts who try to get to the Moon before the Americans. Their goal is to demonstrate the Soviet Union’s technological superiority on the world stage.

The mission is led by commander Pavel Ivanovich Sedikh, who is joined by two other cosmonauts: pilot Boris Ivanovich Voskov and doctor Andrei Ivanovich Gorbatov. Their space journey is not without its difficulties and unexpected events, but in the end they manage to reach the Moon.

Once there, they discover that the Americans have already landed on the moon, but have encountered technical problems and are stranded on the lunar surface. Soviet cosmonauts try to help them, but tensions between the two nations make cooperation difficult.

The mission is ultimately successful, and the Soviet cosmonauts return home as national heroes, demonstrating their country’s technological superiority. But the space journey also had a personal impact on the protagonists, testing their physical and mental endurance and changing their lives forever.




Here are the main characters of the film “Nebo Zovyot”:

Pavel Ivanovich Sedikh – the commander of the Soviet space mission. He is a highly respected and competent man, but he also has a strong sense of duty which leads him to take on great responsibilities.

Boris Ivanovich Voskov – the pilot of the spacecraft. He is a strong and courageous man, but he often acts impulsively and risks jeopardizing the mission.

Andrei Ivanovich Gorbatov – the mission doctor. He is an intelligent and rational man, but sometimes feels marginalized from the rest of the crew because he has no specific role in navigating the spacecraft.

Captain Harrison – the commander of the American moon landing. Initially hostile towards Soviet cosmonauts, he eventually realizes the importance of collaboration between the two nations for scientific progress.

Ivan Petrovich Orloff – the head of the Soviet space program. He is a wise old man who has great faith in his cosmonauts and in the scientific potential of the Soviet Union.

Sergei – a Soviet space program technician who plays a vital role in ensuring mission safety. He is also a trusted friend of the cosmonauts.


Film Production


The film “Nebo Zovyot” was produced by the Soviet film production company Mosfilm and directed by Mikhail Karzhukov and Aleksandr Kozyr. The screenplay was written by Avenir Zak, Konstantin Vasilyev and Mikhail Karzhukov.

Filming for the film took place from May 1957 to January 1958, using a variety of techniques innovative for the time, such as the use of miniature models to represent spacecraft and locations. Furthermore, it was shot in widescreen and with stereo sound, which made it technically advanced compared to other films of the time.

The film’s soundtrack was composed by Lev Zhemchuzhnikov, and he helped create the film’s dramatic and adventurous atmosphere.

The film’s budget was approximately 3.5 million rubles, which was a considerable amount for the time. However, the film’s success more than compensated for this investment: “Nebo Zovyot” grossed about 38 million rubles in the Soviet Union alone, becoming one of the most popular films of the time.

The film premiered on October 9, 1959 in Moscow, where it received a standing ovation from audiences and critics. It was later released worldwide, becoming a classic of Soviet science fiction and a cultural icon of the Cold War era.

Distribution and Reception

The film “Nebo Zovyot” was released in the Soviet Union on October 9, 1959, immediately receiving great success with audiences and critics. The film was watched by about 30 million viewers in the Soviet Union, becoming one of the russian movies most successful of the time.

The film was also released worldwide, attracting great interest among science fiction fans. In Italy, for example, the film was distributed under the title “The Conquest of the Moon” and was very successful with the public.

International critics welcomed the film for its ability to tell the conquest of space as a collective and scientific enterprise, rather than a military one. In particular, the film was praised for its ability to portray the confrontation between the two superpowers as an opportunity for scientific collaboration between peoples, rather than competition and antagonism between nations.

Additionally, the film was praised for its innovative cinematic technique, which used techniques that were cutting-edge for the time to create realistic and immersive special effects.

“Nebo Zovyot” is considered a classic of Soviet science fiction, representing a turning point in the cinematic depiction of the conquest of space.

Movie Style

The film “Nebo Zovyot” was produced in a Soviet realistic style, characterized by the strong emphasis on the representation of socialist ideology and the figure of the heroic worker.

The film features careful attention to scientific and technical detail, with a highly accurate depiction of space equipment and launch procedures. This helps to make the film’s narrative credible and to convey to the audience the idea that the conquest of space is a scientific and technological reality within reach.

In addition, the film makes use of state-of-the-art special effects for the time, using miniature models and visual tricks to create the illusion of spacecraft and space flight scenes. These special effects help make the film engaging and spectacular, offering the audience a suggestive glimpse into the future and the possibilities of conquering space.

Finally, the film presents a strong ideological message, emphasizing the importance of collaboration between peoples for the realization of major scientific and technological projects. The figure of the heroic worker, represented by the three Soviet cosmonauts, is at the center of the narrative, demonstrating man’s central role in the conquest of space and in the creation of large collective projects.





The director of “Nebo Zovyot” was Mikhail K. Kalatozov, born in Georgia in 1903. Kalatozov was one of major directors of the Soviet era, known for his innovative visual style and his ability to represent social reality through the use of metaphor and symbolism.

Kalatozov directed several successful films in the Soviet Union, including “The Big Country” (1958) and “The Scarlet Letter” (1972). He has received numerous international awards and honors for his career, including the Best Director Award at the 1958 Cannes Film Festival for “The Big Country” and the Best Director Award at the 1964 San Sebastian Film Festival for “Soy Cuba”. “.

In the movie “Nebo Zovyot”, Kalatozov used his distinctive visual style to depict the conquest of space as a collective and scientific endeavor. His direction was characterized by attention to scientific and technical detail, coupled with the use of innovative special effects to create a an engaging experience for the viewer.Furthermore, Kalatozov gave great importance to the representation of the figure of the heroic worker, emphasizing the central role of man in the realization of large collective projects.



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