The Mystery of the Notebook 1981 review

“The Mystery of the Notebook” (1981) Review

“The Mystery of the Notebook”: The retired major Alexey Samartsev (Nikolai Penkov) returns to his hometown and learns that his younger brother, Yuri, is accused of embezzling the state. Samartsev does not believe in the guilt of his brother. He thinks that Yuri just became a victim of someone’s financial machinations.

To save his brother from a long prison sentence, Alexei must find a mysterious notebook containing evidence against the bandits. However, the criminals are also looking for a book, and even follow the former warrior. The leader of the gang (Anatoly Solonitsyn) asks his girlfriend named Natalya to seduce the major.

Alexey understands that the notebook is the key to the puzzle. With the help of old friends from the army, Sarantsev lures the bandits to the cottage of one of his colleagues, where the final battle unfolds.

The film “The Mystery of the Notebook” by director Vladimir Shamshurin is not the vivid example of a Soviet detective film. However, there are all the necessary elements of the genre: a truly honest protagonist, a cunning temptress, fearless Soviet militia and a whole gang of cunning criminals.

The film “The Mystery of the Notebook” lacks narrative dynamics. There are many dialogues about morality, about duty and honor. And very few chases and fights that are so appreciated by fans of the genre. Nevertheless, the film leaves a pleasant impression, since good ultimately triumphs over evil. Although the viewer will not know whether that notebook could help Yuri go free.

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