Follows the Soviet dictator's last days and depicts the chaos of the regime after his death.
Everybody wants a piece
Did You Know?
When the committee first assemble after Stalin's stroke and debate summoning a doctor, the members acknowledge that the best doctors are unavailable as they've been arrested for plotting. This is a reference to the notorious "Doctors' Plot" of 1952-53, in which the increasingly paranoid and anti-Semitic Joseph Stalin
did indeed have some of the nation's top physicians (mainly Jewish) arrested on charges of conspiring his death. Four weeks after Stalin's death, the Kremlin announced that the evidence against them was fabricated and released them. See more
Faced with Stalin's imminent death, Svetlana says that she knows "doctors in Stalingrad". Stalingrad is an industrial city far away in Southern Russia. Surely, the writers meant Leningrad (St Petersburg) which would indeed have many distinguished doctors. Svetlana doesn't seem to have spent any time in Stalingrad, so there's no reason to think that she would have known doctors there. See more
Right, what's a war hero got to do to get some lubrication around here?
Black-and-white photographs of the main characters appear over the end credits, but various figures are airbrushed out, have their faces defaced, or have other people superimposed over them, as per Soviet photos of Trotsky and purge victims. See more