Josef Stalin rises from his rejection as being physically unfit in the Czar's army during world War I to undisputed head of the huge Soviet empire of the 1950s. After the success of the Bolshevik Revolution in 1917 he vies with arch-rival Leon Trotsky for power under the acknowledged leader, Vladimir Lenin. After Lenin's stroke, the merciless Georgian's ruthless methods soon eliminates all rivals and his cruel paranoia and overt sadism help him maintain power by eliminating every possible rival including many former comrades.
Did You Know?
To prepare for the role, Duvall watched numerous hours of newsreels, read many books about Stalin, and spoke to Russians who remembered him. He said that playing Stalin was the most challenging role of his career. See more
When there's a brawl at the railway station, all the train guards are standing at attention and staring straight ahead. They should be trying to restore order. See more
Nadia thought Stalin was going to change Russia...
She was right.
from "Carnival of the Animals"
by Camille Saint-Saëns
Used as background music for archive footage See more