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Baltazar's Feasts, or The Night with Stalin (Piry Valtasara, ili noch so Stalinym)

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Baltazar's Feasts,
or The Night with Stalin
(Piry Valtasara,
ili noch so Stalinym)
Piry Valtasara DVD.jpg
DVD Cover
Country SOV.jpg USSR
Directed by Yuriy Kara
Release Date 1989
Language Russian
Studio Gorky Film Studio
Ladya Studio
Main Cast
Character Actor
Joseph Stalin Aleksey Petrenko
Sandro Chegemba Aleksandr Feklistov
Lavrentiy Beria Valentin Gaft
Mikhail Kalinin Yevgeniy Yevstigneyev
Kliment Voroshilov Sergey Nikonenko
Nestor Lakoba Aleksey Safonov

Baltazar's Feasts, or The Night with Stalin (Piry Valtasara, ili noch so Stalinym; the title is a reference to biblical Belshazzar's feast) is a 1989 Soviet historical drama movie directed by Yuriy Kara and based on the novel "Sandro iz Chegema" by Fazil Iskander. In 1935, a folk dance troupe from Transcaucasian region of Abkhazia performs for Stalin and other high-ranking Soviet officials. The leading dancer Sandro Chegemba remembers the events of 1906 when he, a shepherd boy at that time, have met a group of abreks (Caucassian outlaws) who commited a robbery of a steamer off the Abkhazian coast. The leader of the outlaws orderes his men to kill the hostages, then his lieutenant kills the gang members only to be killed himself by the leader who takes all loot for himself. This ruthless man turns out to be Koba Jughashvili - Joseph Stalin.

The following weapons were used in the film Baltazar's Feasts, or The Night with Stalin (Piry Valtasara, ili noch so Stalinym):


Nagant M1895

In the scene of Sandro's memories, the captain of the steamer (Stanislav Korenev) surrenders his Nagant M1895 revolver to one of the abreks. Another abrek (Sergei Silkin) is also seen with a Nagant. In the scene in 1935, Kliment Voroshilov (Sergey Nikonenko) fires a Nagant in air to salute for the dancers. NKVD personnel carry Nagant holsters in the same scene.

Nagant M1895 Revolver - 7.62x38R Nagant. Note the angular front sight which was used from 1930s.
The captain surrenders his Nagant to an abrek. The revolver is seen in distance but its appearance is quite recognizable.
The abrek (Sergei Silkin), guarding the hostages in the boat, holds a Nagant (at the left).
Same abrek holds a Nagant and a Mauser C96 during the massacre of the hostages.
Voroshilov salutes with his Nagant.
Another view of Voroshilov's revolver.
Piry Valtasara-Nagant-6.jpg
NKVD security guards carry Nagant holsters.

Mauser C96

In the scene of Sandro's memories, Koba Jughashvili (Aleksey Petrenko) and several of his men are armed with Mauser C96 pistols. Visible "new safety" that lacks a hole allows to identify at least one of this pistols as "Wartime Commercial" model.

Mauser C96 "Pre-War Commercial" - 7.63x25mm Mauser
Piry Valtasara-MauserC96-1.jpg
An abrek (Sergei Silkin) dual-wields two Mauser C96 pistols during the robbery on the steamer.
Koba holds a Mosin Nagant M1938 Carbine and a Mauser C96 pistol.
Piry Valtasara-MauserC96-5.jpg
Koba holds a Mauser while ordering his men to kill the hostages.
The abrek dual-wields a Nagant M1895 revolver together with his Mauser C96 during the massacre of the hostages.
The abrek holds his Mauser.
He was treacherously killed.

Mauser C96 M1930

In the scene in 1935, the Abkhaz communist leader Nestor Lakoba (Aleksey Safonov) shows his marksmanship, firing a Mauser C96 M1930 pistol. While the barrel is seen not clear enough to discern the typical step on the barrel, the pistol has a side-to-side lanyard ring and full size barrel.

Mauser C96 M1930 - 7.63x25mm Mauser
An NKVD officer brings a Mauser to Lakoba.
Nestor Lakoba examines the pistol...
...and readies it to shoot at an egg, placed on the head of local chef.
Lakoba takes aim.
Lakoba shows his marksmanship.
Nestor Lakoba (Aleksey Safonov) aims a Mauser on a promotional image.


Mosin Nagant M1938 Carbine

In the scene of Sandro's memories, several abreks are armed with anachronistic Mosin Nagant M1938 Carbines (it's worth noting that even M1907 carbines didn't exist in 1906 yet, and Berdan carbines would be more suitable).

Mosin Nagant M38 Carbine - 7.62x54mm R
Koba's lieutenant (Kakha Dzadzamiya) holds the ship's captain at gunpoint with his carbine.
The barrel with the hooded front sight of the M1938 carbine is seen better.
Koba Jughashvili (Aleksey Petrenko) holds an M38 Carbine and a Mauser C96 pistol. An M38 Carbine is also partially seen in hands of an abrek at the left.
Koba's lieutenant holds the ship's purser (Viktor Anikiyev) at gunpoint.
Koba holds an M38 Carbine.
Koba's lieutenant holds a M38 Carbine during the massacre on the hostages.
An uncredited abrek at the right holds an M38 Carbine during the massacre of the hostages.


English language DVD cover

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