– Akcja, Dramat, Thriller
– XIX wiek, St. Petersburg ogarnia fala pojedynków. Dla jednych to sposób na życie, dla innych na przeżycie…
– Set in Saint Petersburg in 1860, the story revolves around retired officer Yakovlev. A deadly shot, Yakovlev is effectively a kind of mercenary in that he is available for hire through his associate Baron Staroe to stand in for others in formal duels.
Much later in the film, flashbacks reveal that years ago an Aleut shaman has predicted he would never die, and so far that seems about right as Yakovlev wins duel after duel, wounding and more often killing noble opponents. Although duels of honor are technically illegal in Russia at the time, no one pays the law a blind bit of notice. The code of practice is not written down anywhere, and yet everyone knows the rules and rituals, while many participants see it as an almost mystical rite. To take part in a duel is to accept that one’s fate is ultimately in the hands of God, hence the practice of Russian roulette.
Eventually, it turns out that all of Yakovlev’s recent duels were secretly arranged by Count Beklemishev. He is a shadowy puppet master with a grudge and designs on Princess Martha Tuchkova whose brother Prince Tuchkov Yakovlev is scheduled to duel with next. When attraction stirs between him and the pretty blond princess, problems arise, especially since, as the flashbacks reveal, Yakovlev has an agenda of his own.