About the WW2 battle of Stalingrad, Russia, lost by the Germans.
Shows some of the horrors of war in the tradition started by All Quiet on the Western Front.
The two main problems:
- One learns next to nothing about the actual battle of Stalingrad.
- The characters, especially military leaders, are two-dimensional cardboard cutouts. Even the few sympathetic characters act in bizarre, inhuman ways. Perhaps that is the movie’s point. But unless we gain insight, what good is it?
On the other hand, for stunning, evocative cinematography and emotional “moments” it exceeds anything Spielberg could do.
Thus, I’m giving it an L1; a squeaky 1, but a 1.