Surrounded by a few party officials, Alexei Ivanov, a stakhanovist smelter, is decorated by Stalin. The "Little Father of the Peoples" takes this opportunity to invoke threats of war.... ... See full summary »
Surrounded by a few party officials, Alexei Ivanov, a stakhanovist smelter, is decorated by Stalin. The "Little Father of the Peoples" takes this opportunity to invoke threats of war.... One day, war indeed breaks out. Bombs fall on the field where Alexei finds himself in the company of the schoolmistress Natacha, his fiancée. Alexei joins the Red Army and soon becomes a sergeant. Fighting rages and German troops advance. Natacha is arrested and deported. But the tide turns decisively with the German defeat at Stalingrad. Now the major offensive against Hitler can begin. Written by
A scene where Stalin gives advice to Alyosha on how to win Natasha was later cut out of the film, because Lavrentiy Beria, Stalin's head of the secret police who was disgraced under Khruschev, was in the scene. See more »
This of course is a pro-Stalin Russian film, but it has other values.First of all, for occidental public, and as many other Russian films of the 40's and 50's, it shows us the almost never watched Russian-side of the II World War.For them it was the "Liberation War", where they lost 18 to 21 million people, more than all the other nation's loses.Something we often forget or simply ignore, so this is an opportunity, from a mere historical view, to look at that "ignored" side of the big war. Keeping Stalin speeches, his battle planning and his final and incredible arrival to Berlin apart, the movie shows good epic moments:the final battle for the Reichstag, the surrender of the German troops in the streets of Berlin, the dialog between the "good worker and soldier" Aloisha with a German officer explaining how they will destroy his city and house as they did with their houses and cities, the final celebration before the(real)ruins of the Reichstag...And also the Hitler's scenes, which constitute a kind of "grand guignol", another movie inserted in the epic film.It's also interesting to see the theories (wether they be only partly true)about Nazis relations with English industrial trusts in the middle of the war, or Hitler's hope of an agreement with Anglo-Americans against Russians, anticipating the Cold War.We the Spanish know something about this, as the fascist Franco was kept in power by the allies, taking advantage of this cold war. "Padeniye Berlina", sometimes boring and a bit theatrical, contains these and many other good scenes, an attractive photographic work (with those Agfa color negatives, so different, but not less fascinating, from the accustomed American technicolor of the time), and a good score. And then , the Stalin omnipresence. But, sceptical as I am in relation to all political regimes, I don't think this propaganda film to be so different from other occidental films of the kind (war, patriotic ones). For me, it's good to get now the opportunity to watch many soviet films we couldn't even know of before the "DVD-era" arrived.They show less propaganda than we could expect (not in this film, of course)and let us know of their daily stories, or their war epics and miseries, so similar to the hundred of stories of American cinema with which we grew up.
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