In this drama with socio-political nuances, a heroic engineer is able to save the passengers on his train from injury or death by sacrificing his own life when his locomotive crashes. An investigator (Oleg Borisov) and Malinin, a journalist (Anatoli Solonitsin) are both involved in the story of the crash but from two different angles: the investigator wants to find out why it happened, the journalist wants to laud the heroism of the dead engineer. In the end, the investigator discovers that the responsibility for the disaster lies with a series of people, officials and others, who made significant errors that added up to a fatality. The question is in the end, whose story will see the light of day -- the investigator's or the journalist's? This was Anatoli Solonitsin's last film, as the actor died of cancer in June of 1982. He was the favorite actor of the critically-acclaimed director Andrei Tarkovsky, who had been hoping to cast Solonitsin in his next work, Nostalghia.
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