Sputnik parents guide

Sputnik Parent Guide

This isn't hugely different from other alien/parasite movies, but it's fresh enough for adult fans of the genre to enjoy.

Overall C

Digital on Demand: A tragic disaster has struck the Russian space program, leaving a sole survivor...but he didn't come back alone.

Release date August 14, 2020

Violence D
Sexual Content C
Profanity A
Substance Use C+

Why is Sputnik rated Not Rated? The MPAA rated Sputnik Not Rated

Run Time: 113 minutes

Parent Movie Review

Tatyana Klimova (Oksana Akinshina) is a talented doctor, but her unusual methods have brought her to the attention of a professional board which threatens to either dismiss her or report her to the state prosecutor. Given how the state prosecutor behaves in the Soviet Union in 1983, Tatyana is looking for a way out – and just so happens to bump into Colonel Semiradov (Fedor Bondarchuk), a mysterious officer who needs Tatyana’s approach to medical risk-taking. But once she’s at Semiradov’s secret facility in Soviet Kazakhstan, she finds that things are more complicated than she had anticipated. An injured cosmonaut, Konstantin Veshnyakov (Pyotor Fyodorov) the only survivor from his mission, is completely unable to recall what caused the spacecraft to malfunction or what killed his co-pilot. Unfortunately, the answer to those mysteries puts them all at risk…

I love a good creepy alien movie, and this is at least a mostly decent creepy alien movie. It’s a pretty well saturated genre, but Sputnik puts enough of a new gloss on the old formula to keep me engaged. A huge part of that fresh spin is the fact that this is a Russian film – the Ministry of Culture even appears in the production credits – and you almost never get to see Cold War movies told from the Soviet point of view and made in the former Soviet Union. It’s a viewpoint you don’t typically get in the West.

I’m going to go way out on a limb and say this isn’t a kids movie. Unless you’re raising your kids on a steady diet of Alien and maybe The Thing, the exceptionally graphic and alarmingly frequent violence isn’t going to do them any favors. Alternatively, if you really want to give your kids nightmares, this is probably an awesome choice, because apart from the violence and some brief partial nudity, there are comparatively light content concerns with this film. It’s really unusual to see a movie with such graphic violence and so little profanity – maybe the English subtitles miss out, but since I don’t speak Russian, I have no way to know. (It’s possible that the dubbed version has more swearing.) The violence, however, is enough to push this into Restricted territory, so this is definitely not family movie night fodder.

Sure, this isn’t hugely different from other alien/parasite style movies – but it is fresh enough to be worth a watch if you’re a fan of the genre. Absolutely soaked in a depressing (and unmistakably Soviet) atmosphere, dripping gore (and no small amount of mucus), and pleasantly tense, Sputnik is a good time…relatively speaking. Maybe don’t watch this one with a snack, though.

Directed by Egor Abramenko. Starring Oksana Akinshina, Fedor Bondarchuk, and Pyotr Fyodorov. Running time: 113 minutes. Theatrical release August 14, 2020. Updated

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Sputnik
Rating & Content Info

Why is Sputnik rated Not Rated? Sputnik is rated Not Rated by the MPAA

Violence: There are repeated instances of individuals having their heads messily removed/eaten/mangled. These are explicit and gory with plenty of splattering blood and sometimes visible brains. Several individuals are shot. A character is seen with blood around his mouth and eyes that have turned black. A character dies of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Someone’s hand is torn off. There are scenes of creatures coming in and out of people’s mouths. People are ordered to “terminate” other people. There are frequent scenes of corpses, sometimes covered and other times with blood and damage.
Sexual Content: A scene briefly depicts female toplessness in a shower. There is a brief reference to sexual assault. There is mention of the rape and murder of a 12 year old.
Profanity: None in the subtitled version. (The dubbed film might differ.)
Alcohol / Drug Use: A man injects a drug that expels a creature from his mouth. A man is injected with a sedative. A woman unknowingly drinks drugged tea. People are seen taking unidentified pills.

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Messy alien parasite movies include Alien, Prometheus, Venom, Life, and Apollo 18. Other solid sci-fi choices include 2001: A Space Odyssey, Ad Astra, Contact, or Interstellar.