« All Events
THE MAN WHO SAVED THE WORLD Film Showing at Peace Center of Delaware County/Springfield Friends Meetinghouse
October 7, 2022 @ 7:00 pm - 9:30 pm
The Man Who Saved the World is a 2013 Danish documentary about Stanislav Petrov of the Soviet Air Defense Forces and his role in preventing a nuclear holocaust when the Soviet early warning system twice reported that U.S. missiles were heading toward the Soviet Union.
Discover what really happened – both terrifying and life-affirming — and what we can learn from this, especially now in this time of war as we face talk and threats of nuclear war .
On 26 September 1983, the computers in the Serpukhov-15 bunker outside Moscow, which housed the command centre of the Soviet early warning satellite system, twice reported that U.S. intercontinental ballistic missiles were heading toward the Soviet Union. Stanislav Petrov, who was duty officer that night, suspected that the system was malfunctioning and managed to convince his superiors of the same thing. He argued that if the U.S. was going to attack pre-emptively it would do so with more than just five missiles, and that it was best to wait for ground radar confirmation before launching a counter-attack.
The documentary features Petrov’s 2006 trip to the US with interpreter Galina. On the trip, Petrov visits the UN, meets among others Kevin Costner and visits a decommissioned Minuteman missile silo.
In the film, footage of Petrov is intertwined with re-enactments of the dramatic moments in 1983. Sergey Shnyryov plays Petrov in the re-enactments.
Swedish film maker, Peter Anthony, made the film over a decade; the process was difficult because of Petrov’s reluctance to open up. Anthony said: “He is quite difficult to work with, as in his day, you could still go to the gulag for disclosing unauthorised information, and as an ex-soldier, he wasn’t really interested in discussing his personal feelings. That though is the beauty of the story.”
Film showing: FREE. Running time: 110 minutes. Languages: English and Russian, with English subtitles.