Bil’s rating (out of 5): BB.5.
USA/Germany/United Kingdom/Ireland, 2001. Swanford Films, MP Film Management, Little Bird, DOS, Reperage, Mandalay Pictures, KC Medien, Paramount Pictures. Screenplay by Jean-Jacques Annaud, Alain Godard. Cinematography by Robert Fraisse. Produced by Jean-Jacques Annaud, John D. Schofield. Music by James Horner. Production Design by Wolf Kroeger. Costume Design by Gudrun Leyendecker, Janty Yates. Film Editing by Noelle Boisson, Humphrey Dixon.
Jude Law plays a Russian soldier from the sticks whose skills as a marksman help the Red Army single-handedly protect Stalingrad from German invasion. Joseph Fiennes is the urban intellectual whose fervent propagandizing of Law’s achievements makes the sniper a hero and makes the two men the closest of friends. Trouble is afoot, however, when both fall in love with beautiful Rachel Weisz and everything is put on the line. Like all of Jean-Jacques Annaud’s films, this is a lushly beautiful (despite the cold Russian weather), sumptuously produced period piece, but the characterizations are dull and the story is quite boring. Features Bob Hoskins impressively playing Khrushchev.