Raspad - The Decay

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
German title Raspad - The Decay (TV title "Destruction")
Original title Распад / Raspad
Country of production Soviet Union / USA
original language Russian
Publishing year 1990
length 95 minutes
Age rating FSK 12
Director Mikhail Belikov
script Oleg Prichodko
Mikhail Belikov
production Michail Kostjuskowski
Peter O. Almond
music Igor Stenchuk
camera Wassili Truschkowski
Alexander Schagajew
cut Tatjana Magalias

Raspad - The decay is a film drama from director Mikhail Belikov from the year 1990 .

The film deals with the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in April 1986, the Soviet government's attempts to cover up and how the media dealt with the accident.


The journalist Alexander Shuravlyov returned to Kiev from a trip abroad at the end of April 1986 and celebrated Good Friday with friends. A friend, the doctor Anatolij Stepanowich, who did not come to the celebration, went to an unspecified emergency at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant that night .

While Shuravlyov learned of his wife's infidelity the next day, Stepanovich, who recognized the symptoms of radiation sickness in an employee of the power plant, tried unsuccessfully to warn the people in Pripyat . Shuravlyov's attempt to find out more from his editor-in-chief is rejected.

The evacuation does not begin until a day later. The residents of Pripyat are brought out of the danger zone in buses. Foreign reporters are also to be appeased at a press conference. Nevertheless, rumors are making the rounds, the first emergency abortions are being carried out, and tickets from the possibly affected area are only available at black market prices.

Shurawljow blackmailed Shurik, party official and lover of his wife Lyudmilla, on the one hand to have his wife and son safely removed from Kiev and on the other hand to be able to visit the scene of the accident with a group of reporters. Both are arranged, and Shurawljow lets himself be celebrated as a hero with the others while he gets into the helicopter.

The meticulously planned reporting because of the radiation exposure succeeds. Shurawljow takes pictures and lets himself be photographed. He is briefly haunted by a vision of his friend Stepanowich, who has since died.

Half a year later, Shuravlyov is editor-in-chief himself. His car is demolished by dissatisfied people. The wife and son have returned. At the meeting with the same friends as at Easter - this time in resigned silence - Shuravlyov's pictures from Chernobyl are shown.

At the same time as the main action, the newly married couple Valerij and Lyuba in Pripyat separate themselves from the crowded family celebration in order to be able to spend the wedding night undisturbed in a tent in the surrounding woods. The two of them experience the effects in their surroundings by chance and with growing fear, from a dead bird next to the tent to cattle butchered to the disinfection of an Orthodox church during the Easter Sunday liturgy.

At the same time, little boy Kolya is separated from his family during the evacuation. He errs through the seemingly orderly measures, does not want to part with his contaminated kitten, watches some of the processes and finally returns to Pripyat alone. The last time he was seen - already marked by radiation sickness - while journalists were flying over the deserted city, he was writing a message to his mother in chalk on the square next to the ferris wheel.


Documentary recordings from Pripyat and Chernobyl from the time before and after the disaster were integrated into the film.

Both the beginning and the end sequence (slide presentations as a framework for the film) are highlighted with a song by Vladimir Vysotsky .


The film received the gold medal of the President of the Italian Senate at the Venice International Film Festival in 1990 and the German Youth Video Prize in 1991.


“Eco-thriller about the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in April 1986. Using the means of entertainment cinema, the film tries to shed light on the background and cover-up tactics and to raise awareness of the problem. An interesting contribution that is worth discussing and at the same time reflects the "process of disintegration" of Soviet society. "

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Overview of the winners of the Venice Film Festival in the Internet Movie Database
  2. State Media Service Bavaria
  3. ^ Raspad - The decay in the lexicon of international filmsTemplate: LdiF / Maintenance / Access used