Based on the short story by Mikhail Sholokhov, Director-actor Sergei Bondarchuk’s debut film ‘Destiny of Man’ a.k.a. ‘Fate of a Man’ is moving tale of a Russian carpenter Andrei Sokolov who falls in love with a beautiful orphan girl. He marries her and lives happily with her family of three kids until reality of second world war strikes him. He left his family to serve his motherland. On the front he was soon captured by Germans and turned into POW in Nazi concentration camp along with many others. His struggle to survive against tyranny and attempts to escape plays hide and seek with his fate and strong will to reunite his family. Luckily he escapes and returns to his native land to witness the ugly side of post war.
Shot in fine frozen and natural B&W camera, the film is noticeable for its Neorealist treatment, well restrained act and direction. Bondarchuk brilliantly captured the ruined buildings as documents of war and Andrei’s sublime relationship with orphan kid like those Neorealist Masters. It’s quite straight and simple film and yet one of the most moving antiwar document where humanity wins all the adversity of evil.