Below are some excellent examples of Soviet spy fiction. Although the stories are fictional, they are actually quite true to life. Unlike the suave, yet chauvinist and misogynist James Bond action superhero, these tales of espionage could have actually happened; and they provide an education in geopolitics and the hidden world of intelligence/covert operations. Enjoy! And share them with your friends and family! – PC
The Secret Agent Series
LANGUAGE(S): RUSSIAN. SUBTITLES: RUSSIAN, ENGLISH. Psychological spy thriller Based on V. Vostokov and O. Shmelyov’s novel of the same name. The first part of the cult saga about Soviet intelligence agents: “The Secret Agent’s Blunder” (1968), “The Secret Agent’s Destiny” (1970), “The Secret Agent’s Return” (1982), “The End of Operation ‘Secret Agent‘” (1986). The KGB’s Foreign Intelligence Service receives the information that a secret agent of a foreign intelligence center, the son of a White émigré, Count Tulyev, has been planted in the country… This first film, as the rest of the series, enjoyed great popularity thanks to the charisma of a wonderful actor, Georgy Zhzhyonov, who gave a brilliant characterization of the secret agent (1969 box-office leader – 35.4 million viewers). A film debut of actor and bard Mikhail Nozhkin, the author of such hit songs as “The Last Electric Train”, “We Want to Tell You Honestly”, “I Love You, Russia”, “The Last Battle”. His new song, written specially for the film, “I Was Drinking the Sap of a Forest Birch Tree”, broke all the records for winning the people’s love. Part 1 – “According to the Old Legend”, Part 2 – “Snipe’s Return”. Special Features: Filmographies Photo Album “In Memory of G. Zhzhyonov.” (from Amazon)
Seventeen Moments of Spring
The series, based on a popular novel of the same name, depicts the exploits of a Russian spy Isaev, working undercover as Standartenfuhrer Stierlitz, in Nazi Germany during 17 days in very end of WWII. Stierlitz has worked his way to the very top of the RSHA, main Nazi security and intelligence agency, without being caught. However, his “colleagues”, top Hitler’s officers Bormann, Mueller, Schellenberg are beginning to suspect him. Stierlitz is constantly walking on the edge between his two identities, sending information to Russia, while skillfully maintaining the appearance of loyalty to Nazi regime. – Written by <firstname.lastname@example.org> (from IMDb.com)
Teheran 43 / Тегеран-43 DVD-R NTSC with English subtitles The movie is about an assassination attempt on Winston Churchill, Joseph Stalin and Franklin Delano Roosevelt during the Teheran Conference 1943. Teheran 43 starts in 1980 in Paris. The memories of hero Andrei take the story back to 1943. The Germans planned to assassinate the three men. 37 years later, the German agent Max lives with Françoise, a young Parisian woman, who hides him. But another Nazi, Scherner, is hunting down Max who failed to carry out the planned assassinations. Max trusts Françoise, but he doesn’t know that she works for Scherner. (from Amazon)
TASS is Authorized to Announce
A Soviet political thriller in the best tradition of international spy fiction, TASS is authorized to announce . . . reverses the ideological balance of the novels of John Le Carre, Frederick Forsyth and other masters of the genre. The conflict centres on the small African state of Nagonia, newly liberated from colonialism and under Russian protection, which awaits an invasion from the ‘contra’ forces of Mario Ogano, who is backed by both the CIA and the Chinese government. The invasion army, led by German Nazi mercenaries, is training in the jungle and preventing essential supplies reaching Nagonia.
In neighboring Lewisburg, American commercial interests, working through under-cover CIA agents, are warily in contact with Slavin, who the KGB have sent to investigate the situation and to find a way to prevent the invasion. Messages fly to and fro between Moscow and Lewisburg, Washington and the clandestine receiving post of a CIA mole in the Russian capital. Tension mounts as those with secret knowledge are killed or disappear. Slavin realizes that the odds are stacked against him as the invasion draws near. At Moscow Centre intelligence agents work against the clock trying to unravel contradictory evidence and secret codes.
Sales of Tass are in the millions in the Soviet Union and in many countries. It has been adapted into a highly successful Russian television series. (from dust jacket, Publisher: John Calder, Ltd., 1987 English edition)
[Originally published in the USSR in 1979. – PC]