With this movie we invite you to discover one of the most important and heroic pages of the 20th century history – the Battle of Kursk, a major World War II Eastern Front large-scale engagement between the forces of Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union near Kursk in southwestern Russia during the late summer of 1943 (July 5 – August 23). The tank fight – Battle of Prokhorovka – ultimately became the largest tank battle in history.
“The Fire Bulge”
dedicated to the Battle of Kursk is the first part of a film series Liberation (Russian: Освобождение, German: Befreiung, Polish: Wyzwolenie) released in 1970-1971, directed by Yuri Ozerov and shot in wide-format NIKFI process (70 mm).
The films are a dramatized account of the liberation of the Soviet Union’s territory and the subsequent defeat of Nazi Germany, focusing on five major Eastern Front campaigns: the Battle of Kursk, the Lower Dnieper Offensive, Operation Bagration, the Vistula–Oder Offensive, and the Battle of Berlin.
The script was written by Yuri Bondarev and Oscar Kurganov.
The series was a Soviet-Polish-East German-Italian-Yugoslav co-production.
Film I: The Fire Bulge
Director: Yuri Ozerov
Screenplay: Yuri Bondarev,Oscar Kurganov, Yuri Ozerov
Starring: Nikolay Olyalin, Larisa Golubkina, Boris Seidenberg
1970* 88 min
After the Soviets are alerted to the imminent German offensive in Kursk, they launch a preemptive artillery strike, delaying the enemy. The battalion of Lieutenant Colonel Lukin – led by officers Tzvetaev, Orlov, and Maximov – participates in the battle, as well as the tank of Lieutenant Vasiliev.
In KZ Sachsenhausen, Yakov Dzhugashvili refuses Andrei Vlasov‘s offer to exchange him for Friedrich Paulus. Meanwhile, in Kursk, the Germans advance. Maximov flees, but finally turns back and chooses to be shot when captured.
When hearing about the German proposal regarding Yakov, Stalin rejects it, saying he will not trade a Field Marshal for a soldier. The Yugoslav partisans break out of an encirclement. The Soviet counter-offensive is launched in Kursk. Erich von Manstein commits all his forces to a final assault, bringing the Soviets close to defeat. Vatutin urges to send in the strategic reserve, which repels the Germans.