Ivan's Childhood

Watch Ivan's Childhood

  • NR
  • 1962
  • 1 hr 35 min
  • 8.0  (39,733)

Ivan's Childhood is a 1962 Soviet film directed by Andrei Tarkovsky. Based on a short story by Vladimir Bogomolov, the movie follows the story of Ivan, a 12-year-old boy who becomes a scout during World War II. The film explores themes of loss, trauma and coming of age through the perspective of a child who has experienced the horrors of war.

The movie begins with dreamlike images of a boy playing by a river, but quickly transitions to a more stark reality as Ivan is shown to be a scout for the Soviet army. He is fearless and resourceful, but his youth makes him vulnerable. Throughout the film, we see flashbacks of Ivan's life before the war, and it is clear that the trauma he has experienced has affected him deeply.

The supporting cast of the film includes an array of characters who are integral to Ivan's journey. Veteran soldiers Masha and Galtsev take Ivan under their wing, despite initial skepticism about his youth. Their relationship with Ivan is complex - they are sometimes protective, sometimes abusive, and sometimes they simply can't understand the depths of Ivan's pain. In contrast, a kind doctor named Kholin provides brief moments of peace and gentleness, but ultimately cannot save Ivan from his fate.

The film's cinematography is striking, using stark black and white imagery to create a sense of unease and tension. Tarkovsky frequently employs visual metaphors, such as shots of trees and branches, to symbolize the chaos of war and the fragility of life. Ivan's Childhood is also notable for its innovative use of sound, including non-diagetic music and dialogue that is often disconnected or overlapping.

Despite its heavy subject matter, Ivan's Childhood has moments of beauty and tenderness. Tarkovsky creates a portrait of a young boy who is forced to grow up too quickly, but who still yearns for love, safety and stability. In one memorable scene, Ivan dreams of his mother and jumps into her outstretched arms, only to be woken up by the sound of bombs.

Overall, Ivan's Childhood is a powerful piece of cinema that showcases Tarkovsky's skill as a director. The film's exploration of trauma and loss has resonated with audiences for decades, and its images of war-torn landscapes and child soldiers are still haunting. While it is not an easy film to watch, Ivan's Childhood is an important work that reminds us of the human cost of war.

Ivan's Childhood is a 1962 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 35 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 8.0.

Ivan's Childhood
Where to Watch Ivan's Childhood
Ivan's Childhood is available to watch free on Plex. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Ivan's Childhood for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 35 min
  • IMDB Rating
    8.0  (39,733)