Ex-Commander of the Soviet Submarine K-19. Polenin is under great pressure from the Russian leadership to not only launch on time, but to have the new flagship of the fleet ready for a successful missile test firing to get the attention of the U.S. government. The fact that some systems in the K-19 seem to be faulty and fail on a regular basis is of no concern for the government, and they believe that Captain Polenin has put the safety of his crew over the interests of the Communist Party. Russia, by thus, decides that Capt. Polenin is not fit to command the ship. Since Polenin knows the ship and crew well, he is assigned to stay aboard the K-19 as an executive officer under the command of Captain. Alexi Vostrikov
See Captain Vostrikov
Captain Polenin: "At every stage of this disaster which came within moments of being a far greater disaster, the officers and crew did what had to be done. 7 are now dead. And nobody knows how many more are dying or how fast. These are the men who returned home to be interrogated as if a crime had been commited. Questioned, even when undergoing treatment for radiation poisoning. Locked up and denied access to wives and families. But they and their comrades saved K-19. And maybe, just maybe, they saved all of you as well."
Soviet Brass: "Thank you Capt. Polenian"
Captain Polenin: "One thing more, please."
Soviet Brass: "Thank you-"
Captain Polenin: "No Captain, in the Soviet Navy has ever been faced with such decisions. The fate of the boat, the crew... the fate of the world. All in the balance. (sighs) The Navy is my life, and one thing I know: there can be only one captain of a ship. The burden of command is on his shoulders, and his alone. None of you. None of you has the right to judge Capt. Vostrikov. You weren't there... I was. He was our captain, he was my captain. (Looks over at Captain Vostrikov and stands at attention) And it would be an honor, to sail under his command again."