Stalingrad film

Stalingrad / Сталинград

Published: June 21, 2016

Stalingrad (Сталинград) is a Russian film released in 2013. It takes place during the Battle of Stalingrad, one of the decisive battles of World War II. The battle, which was between the Soviet Union and Germany and took place from August 1942 to February 1943, resulted in almost two million casualties and was one of the biggest defeats for the Nazis during the war, paving the way for Allied victory.

The film tells the story of two couples during the battle. The first is Sergey, a Russian soldier, and Katya, a young woman who lives in a house that Sergey and several other Russians are occupying. The second couple is Hauptmann Kahn, a German officer leading some of the German troops, and Masha, a Russian woman whom he falls in love with. The film includes both battle and love scenes.

The film got decent but not overwhelmingly positive reviews. Rossiyskaya Gazeta found the film to be stunningly, artistically theatrical, citing its use of 3D and IMAX. Negative criticisms included the melodramatic script and the fact that the special effects seemed to have been given more weight than the story itself. There were also political criticisms: some felt that the love stories took the focus away from the heroism of the soldiers in the battle, and that the film was not historically accurate.

The film was nominated for six Golden Eagles and won four, for best cinematography, art direction, costumes, and sound design.

Director: Fyodor Bondarchuk
Stars: Pyotr Fyodorov, Maria Smol’nikova, Yana Studilina, Dmitry Lysenkov, Thomas Kretschmann
Production company: Art Pictures Studio, Non-Stop Production
Box office take: $51.7 million in Russia; $68 million worldwide

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Official trailer:

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Stalingrad film

About the author

Julie Hersh

Julie studied Russian as a Second Language in Irkutsk and before that, Bishkek, with SRAS's Home and Abroad Scholarship program, with the goal of someday having some sort of Russia/Eurasia-related career. She recently got her master’s degree from the University of Glasgow and the University of Tartu, where she studied women’s dissent in Soviet Russia. She also has a bachelor’s degree in literature from Yale. Some of her favorite Russian authors are Sorokin, Shishkin, Il’f and Petrov, and Akhmatova. In her spare time Julie cautiously practices martial arts, reads feminist websites, and taste-tests instant coffee for her blog.

Program attended: Home and Abroad Scholar

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