The Thirteen

The Thirteen (Russian: Тринадцать, romanized: Trinadtsat) is a 1937 Soviet adventure film directed by Mikhail Romm.

The Thirteen
Directed byMikhail Romm
Written byIosif Prut
Mikhail Romm
StarringIvan Novoseltsev
Yelena Kuzmina
Music byAnatoli Aleksandrov
CinematographyBoris Volchek
Edited byTatyana Likhachyova
Release date
  • 8 May 1937 (1937-05-08)
Running time
1h 30min
CountrySoviet Union


Soviet Central Asia. Ten demobilized Red Army soldiers ride through the desert to the railroad. Three more people are with them: commander of the frontier Zhuravlev and his wife Maria Nikolaevna and an old geologist. In the desert, they find a well and hidden machine guns – this is the base of Basmach Shirmat Khan, whom the Red Army could not neutralize for a whole year. A single soldier is sent out for help while others remain to restrain the Basmachi.

In the well there is almost no water, but the Red Army carefully conceal it from the Basmachi who have approached. The bandits suffer from thirst, but attack violently in an attempt to reach the well. In an unequal battle, nearly all defenders of the well are killed, and the enemies are captured by the cavalry which has come to the rescue.


  • Ivan Novoseltsev - Commander Ivan Zhuravlyov
  • Yelena Kuzmina - Marya Nikolaevna Zhuravlyova
  • Aleksandr Chistyakov - Aleksandr Petrovich Postnikov, geologist
  • Andrei Fajt - Colonel Skuratov
  • Ivan Kuznetsov - Soldier Yusuf Akchurin


In 1943 the US film Sahara directed by Zoltan Korda and starring Humphrey Bogart and the 1995 remake was released which shared significant similarities in the plot.


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