The Death of Stalin

The Death of Stalin

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"Director Armando Iannucci (Veep) depicts the power grab that ensued after Joseph Stalin died of a stroke in 1953. The Soviet Union's leaders soon dive headlong into a farcical but ruthless game of bargaining, deception, and backstabbing. Adapted from the graphic novel of the same name by Fabien Nury and Thierry Robin. Steve Buscemi, Jeffrey Tambor, Michael Palin, and Jason Isaacs star."--AllMovie.com.

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h
hecto
Oct 04, 2018

A slapstick comedy in which the gags eventually start to wear thin. The film is relieved by some wacky dialogue and good acting, but not enough to make up for the relentless Keystone Cops approach. Fine cameos by Andrea Riseborough as Stalin's daughter and Jason Isaacs as a wonderfully campy Marshal Zhukov.

s
skeeb14
Oct 04, 2018

Someone actually decided to make a movie about Stalin's The Great Terror and try to make it accessible to a mainstream audience by turning it into a black comedy -- "a comedy of terrors" as the dvd jacket says. Huh. The result IMO is more horrifying than funny. When Stalin dies, a motley collection of sociopathic oddballs in the politburo vie to fill the resulting power vacuum. The filmmaker gives the power struggle a sort of "This Is Spinal Tap" treatment, yet without trying to hide or whitewash any of the cruelty and violence. Ambitious filmmaking, yes. Strong acting and production value, yes. Funny, no.

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Biblitz
Sep 28, 2018

Two stars for two laughs. I know the English refuse on principle to respect any sacred cows - everyone and everything is fair game for comedy in their world. Fair enough. But in my world, this film goes too far, IMO, Stalin's terror is too fresh, too recent, and the Russian archives reveal still more of it each day. As a student of Russian literature and contemporary history, as someone who knows many Russians who survived the terror, I just can't find it in my heart to laugh at any of it. No, thanks. Especially in the current political climate when idiots and thugs again favor renewed Marxism. Ugh.

lotuslori_8 Sep 24, 2018

I laughed out loud at this comedy about the crazy insanity of Stalin's inner circle. One can only imagine what's going amongst another well-known leader's advisors.

m
Maoisdead
Sep 15, 2018

What a treat to watch a movie that's not horrifying, polarizing or idiotic, just good, sardonic fun. You'll have to suspend disbelief to see Buscemi as Khrushchev, but amid all the dark humor, just roll with it. Not historically accurate, especially, but that doesn't mean there aren't some excellent, sly insights about the Soviet communist system.

v
VonHafenstaaad
Sep 15, 2018

Very funny film with dark humor. Interesting take on a moment in history. Great acting.

m
manao
Sep 13, 2018

A strange and original mix of goofy British humour and monstrous totalitarian Russian history. Appealing most to history buffs who can tolerate a little dramatic license, the film's comic moments never overshadow the sense of mortal fear referenced by it's Shakespearean subtitle "A Comedy of Terrors."

o
Open_Sesame
Sep 12, 2018

If I didn't know better, I'd swear that this piece of unfunny junk was directed by that ultimate hack film-maker, Luis Bunuel. It's got all of Bunuel's incompetence written all over it. I swear that Hollywood must have resurrected Bunuel from the grave and got him to slap this cinematic turd together. Yep. It's really that bad, and then some.

c
Calvacade
Sep 10, 2018

Extremely BLACK comedy- and yet it's still a pretty funny movie. Great performances all around.

m
MontMoroc
Sep 10, 2018

One of the funniest historical satires in years, perhaps decades. When Stalin dies, the chess game of political leadership starts as a cast of first-rate American and British actors portray Stalin's inner circle. A brilliant expose on government in general and totalitarian forms in particular where fear, paranoia, and vanity seem to rule the day.
What makes it even funnier is how rooted it is in reality.

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bdelligatti
Jul 05, 2018

"I've had nightmares that made more sense than this!"... spoken to Khrushchev

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