Velvet Season (Barkhatnyy sezon)

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Velvet Season (Barkhatnyy sezon)
Barkhatnyy sezon Poster.jpg
Theatrical Release Poster
Country SOV.jpg USSR
CH.jpg Switzerland
Directed by Vladimir Pavlovich
Release Date 1978
Language Russian
Studio Mosfilm
Pro Dis Film A.G. Zurich
Main Cast
Character Actor
Nikolay Shukhov aka Nicholas Juozas Budraitis
Marie Tatyana Sidorenko
Henri Lamer Aleksandr Lazarev, Sr.
Liz Bradbury Valentina Ignatyeva
Richard Bradbury Sergey Bondarchuk
Police Commissioneer Innokentiy Smoktunovskiy
Bernard Algimantas Masiulis
Shipmaster Burr Nikolay Kryuchkov

Velvet Season (Barkhatnyy sezon) is a 1978 Soviet-Swiss action movie directed by Vladimir Pavlovich. The story is set in Autumn 1938 in Southern France. After the International Brigades of Spanish Civil War are dissolved, a trio of former Brigades soldiers, Nicholas (Juozas Budraitis), Henri (Aleksandr Lazarev, Sr.) and Liz (Valentina Ignatyeva), stay for several days in a French seaside town to help the Red Cross nurse Marie (Tatyana Sidorenko) to deliver a group of refugee Spanish children to specially organised orphanage. Meanwile a local leader of French Nazi, Georges Grenier (Viktor Sergachyov) is arrested for several murders and centenced to death penalty. The Nazis under the command of Bernard (Algimantas Masiulis) plan to release their leader by taking hostages in marine station. Nicolas, Henri and Liz are the only ones who have a chance to break this plan.

The following weapons were used in the film Velvet Season (Barkhatnyy sezon):



Nagant M1895


During the interrogation of captured Nicholas and in the final scene Bernard (Algimantas Masiulis) uses a nickel plated short-barreled Nagant M1895 revolver.

Nagant M1895 Revolver with 3.3" barrel - 7.62x38R Nagant
Bernard loads his revolver with a single bullet.
A general view of the revolver.
Bernard aims the revolver at Nicholas...
...and starts interrogation, playing Russian roulette with Nicholas.


Bernard (Algimantas Masiulis) holds a standard Nagant M1895 revolver when his gang take hostages. In the final scene Liz (Valentina Ignatyeva) uses Bernard's revolver. This is Soviet post-1930 version, possibly standing for French Mle 1892 Revolver or original Belgian Nagant.

Nagant M1895 Revolver - 7.62x38R Nagant. This example was dated 1939 manufacture and was a War time issued weapon. Note the angular front sight which was used from 1930s.
Bernard carries a Nagant on his belt.
He draws the revolver.
Liz picks up the revolver, dropped by Bernard.
Barkhatnyy sezon-Nagant-10.jpg
Liz fires the Nagant in the final scene, during the flight in her father's plane, hijacked by Bernard.


Walther P38

Walther P38s are seen in hands of Bernard's henchmen in the scene on the shooting range. Some police officers also carry P38s. P38 was issued to German service only in 1939 and couldn't be seen in France in 1938.

Walther P38 - 9x19mm
Bernard's henchman fires a Walther on shooting range.
Another man holds a Walther in a very unusual way in the same scene.
A policeman in center holds a P38.

Luger P08

A Luger P08 is seen in the scene on the shooting range.

Luger P08 - 9x19mm
Bernard's henchman fires a Luger on shooting range.

FN Model 1922

Several of Bernard's henchmen are armed with FN Model 1922 pistols when they surprise Nicolas.

FN Model 1922 - .32 ACP
Bernard's henchman at the left holds an FN 1922.
Another henchman holds Nicholas on gunpoint.

FN Model 1910

Some French police officers carry FN Model 1910 pistols.

FN Model 1910 - .380 ACP
A policeman aims his pistol.

Submachine Guns


Anachronistic MP40s are widely used by Spanish Republicans and by Bernard's henchmen. Nicholas (Juozas Budraitis), Henri (Aleksandr Lazarev, Sr.), Liz (Valentina Ignatyeva), and Henri's friends Francois (Lev Polyakov) and unnamed one (Viktor Filippov) use captured MP40s during the shootout with Bernard and his gang.

MP40 - 9x19mm
Nicholas and Lis fire at attacking plane in the opening scene.
Barkhatnyy sezon-MP40-3.jpg
A number of MP40 are found in Henri's apartments.
Bernard's henchman holds a MP40 during the hostage scene.
Bernard's henchmen with MP40s.
Liz fires a captured MP40.
Henri fires an MP40.
Nicholas fires MP40.
A closeup of MP40.


In the opening scene Liz holds an MP38, fitted with rear part of receiver, taken from MP40. The same prop is later seen in hands of Bernard's henchman. It is also used by Marie (Tatyana Sidorenko).

MP38 - 9x19mm
Liz's MP38.
Bernard's henchman with MP38.
Marie fires.
She drops the MP38.


Enfield P14

In the opening scene many Spanish Republicans are armed with Enfield Pattern 14 rifles. Same rifles are used by French police. In reality these rifles weren't used by any of these forces, but P14s were widely available for Soviet film studios, having a distinctive "foreign" outlook.

Pattern M1914 (P 14) Enfield - .303 UK
Barkhatnyy sezon-EnfieldP14-1.jpg
Barkhatnyy sezon-EnfieldP14-2.jpg
Spanish Republicans on march. Most carry Enfield P14 rifles.
Barkhatnyy sezon-EnfieldP14-4.jpg
Barkhatnyy sezon-EnfieldP14-5.jpg
Barkhatnyy sezon-EnfieldP14-7.jpg
French policemen with Enfield P14 rifles.

Winchester Model 1895

Winchester Model 1895 rifles are also used by Spanish Republicans. This match the reality as at least 9,000 Russian contract M1895s was provided from USSR to Spain.

A Russian contract Model 1895 in 7.62x54 Russian. Note the loading bridge over the reciever
Republican soldiers carry Winchester M95 rifles on march.
Two soldiers at the left fire at attacking plane.
Barkhatnyy sezon-Rifle-7.jpg
Two men run with Winchester M95s in hands. The image is blurry due to fast movement but the general shape of M95 is still seen.

1893 Spanish Mauser

Several rifles that appear to be genuine 1893 Spanish Mausers are seen in the opening scene.

1893 Spanish Mauser - 7x57mm Mauser
Three rifles match the shape of Spanish Mauser M1893.

Mannlicher M1895

A French policeman holds a rifle that appears to be a Mannlicher M1895.

Original Austro-Hungarian Steyr Mannlicher M1895 - 8x50mmR Mannlicher
The rifle is seen at the right.
The shape of the barrel with stacking rod matches Mannlicher.
The same rifle is seen at the right.

Machine Guns

PKM (visually modified to resemble MG34)

In the opening scene Henri (Aleksandr Lazarev, Sr.) carries a PKM machine gun, visually modified to resemble MG34. Such prop is also mounted on a plane of Spanish Nationalists or Legion Condor (the plane itself isn't seen, only the barrel and belt of the machine gun).

A picture of the original MG34 and PK conversion
Henri carries the fake MG34.
Barkhatnyy sezon-PK-MG-3.jpg
Henri on march with his machine gun.
A MG34 fires from the plane. The belt is seen.
A good view of MG34 barrel.
Henri returns fire.

Maxim M1910

A Russian Maxim M1910 is seen among the weapons of Spanish Republicans. Again it is fitting weapon as no less then 2,500 Russian Maxims were delivered from USSR and Poland.

Maxim 1910, simplified version with smooth water jacket - 7.62x54mmR
Two men at foreground tow a Maxim.
A Maxim M1910 is seen among the weapons, surrendered by Spanish Republicans to French authorities on the border.


Toy Pistol

A Spanish boy carries a toy pistol. The toy plays a notable role in one scene.

Nicholas picks up the toy gun, thrown away by pacifistically minded Marie.
The boy holds his toy gun during the hostage scene.

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