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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An epic,'old school' war film you'll enjoy
At 3 hours long be prepared for a lot of war movie here but you will enjoy it. Reading the other reviews, it makes sense that this was a mini-series edited into a film. The story involves 3 main characters; 2 very heroic and 1 a traitor to his country. The battle scenes are very well done and the romance story while a little 'cheesy' perhaps by western film standards, is...
Published 12 months ago by Kanenberg

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12 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Ignore the Extreme Reviews.
This extremely long Russian production deserves neither the accolade of five stars nor the ignominy of one. It is clearly derived from a comprehensive, made for tv mini series and as such can hardly deliver a huge budget 'feel' to it, however it is well made and worthy of a place in the library of any war movie fan.

The early CGI scenes of the bombers and...
Published on 23 Sept. 2012 by Sam


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40 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Epic!, 1 Oct. 2011
By 
Peter Piper (UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Bomber [DVD] (DVD)
I bought this film on a whim while browsing and I am so glad that I did. It is an unexpected gem. For me its rawness adds to the immediacy and incredible tension that is maintained throughout. In fact I was sitting on the edge of my seat for almost the entire three hours of the film. I cannot imagine what it must have been like having to wait a whole week for the next episode when it was originally broadcast.

Most of the action is outdoors and the locations are perfect; all with excellent vehicles, planes, armaments, buildings and steam trains; costumes, props, extras; everything brilliantly well done. The acting is superb.

Although one reviewer's comments imply that around 100 minutes have been cut from the original serialised version, this film did not come across as being at all episodic. To me it seemed to be extremely well edited into a very coherent story.

A story of the toughest of the tough, yet while struggling, resisting, fighting for their lives, the characters also show the greatest humanity and comradeship. This story has everything: heroism, integrity, betrayal, love and plenty of action, all at a very personal level. One of the best war movies I have seen and one I shall definitely watch again.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An epic,'old school' war film you'll enjoy, 21 July 2014
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This review is from: The Bomber [DVD] (DVD)
At 3 hours long be prepared for a lot of war movie here but you will enjoy it. Reading the other reviews, it makes sense that this was a mini-series edited into a film. The story involves 3 main characters; 2 very heroic and 1 a traitor to his country. The battle scenes are very well done and the romance story while a little 'cheesy' perhaps by western film standards, is similar to "Enemy at the Gates" staring Ed Harris. The subtitles often don't make sense in this film in terms of how the words are arranged nor the description they are providing. But that doesn't really matter in the scope of things; its a war film, you know who the heroes & the bad guys are so just enjoy the movie. And one more thing western viewers might not be ready for is the transitions between scenes. Over & over a scene ends--simply by fading to black with little explanation how you arrive at the next one. But if you just roll with that you'll find this a very enjoyable movie about the Russians turning back the Nazi invaders. It reminded me a lot of "The Star/Zevzda" the fine Russian war film about the brave Scouts/Special Forces soldiers who fought behind the German lines. It takes some 'practice' in my experience watching foreign films with subtitles before you can really enjoy them but once you do its awesome. Mostly its about letting go of our American 'expectations' of how movies are supposed to go. But films/TV shows from Europe don't do things like we do in the US and that just opens up a whole new world of entertainment if your willing (and get a region free DVD player!)
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17 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Action-packed WWII film, 10 Aug. 2011
This review is from: The Bomber [DVD] (DVD)
Great movie which is just stunning to watch. I've enjoyed other recent war films that take slightly different angles than the usual epics (Female Agents/Max Manus). Bomber is similar, taking a Ukrainian perspective of two Soviet fighters stranded in Nazi territory. It's very classic looking, full of really impressive, high budget action sequences, and is genuinely moving. Perfect if you enjoy WWII/Russian history.
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12 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Ignore the Extreme Reviews., 23 Sept. 2012
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This review is from: The Bomber [DVD] (DVD)
This extremely long Russian production deserves neither the accolade of five stars nor the ignominy of one. It is clearly derived from a comprehensive, made for tv mini series and as such can hardly deliver a huge budget 'feel' to it, however it is well made and worthy of a place in the library of any war movie fan.

The early CGI scenes of the bombers and aerial fights are pretty basic - even bordering on poor. However, these scenes are not overly long and even help the viewer to understand the budget limitations of the movie and not to raise expectations too high. The rest of the film trundles along almost as a partisan/love story with just enough action to retain its war movie tag.

The first half of the film runs quite seamlessly without being too episodic, however I did find that as time went by the editting became more and more aggressive, with very obvious chopping and tv style scene shifting. The subtitles are nevertheless very clear, making for easy viewing - although some of the translation is quite comical and allowances need to be made it! The acting is of a good standard and CGI not withstanding the action scenes are effective and well filmed. The final battle is well executed and brings events to a satisfactory near end, leaving just a couple more captivating scenes of will he or won't he? to bring the movie to conclusion.

Buyers need to be prepared for a movie with a heavy love interest and consequently some cheesy scenes - rather than a pure guts and glory all out action film. But with that in mind and for a small investment what you do get is good overall value for money, given the film's duration. Not one for a lad's night in - but certainly worth 3 hours of your time on a wet sunday afternoon when time is available and expectations are not too high.
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17 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent new Russian WW2 (miniseries) Film, 16 Sept. 2011
By 
Ernst Wiltmann "store746" (Parry Sound, Ontario Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: The Bomber [DVD] (DVD)
I enjoyed watching the 8 part miniseries (8x52 minutes)which I ordered from a russian ebay seller in june 2011, without any englisch subtitles: BALLAD OF THE BOMBER
I truly hope we will get the uncut version.
And not the butchery that was done to the LENINGRAD or ATTACK ON LENINGRAD, the version with Armin Mueller Stahl, Mira Sorvino and Gabriel Burn. It seems that most new russian war films upon release get cut beyond recognition.
It's a real shame, because most of the new russian WW2 films are truly awesome.
They contain beside good action and CGI effects, also very good acting and suspenseful stories. Perhaps the western
distributors underestimate the intelligence of the viewers, who are not afraid of watching intelligent and complex
Films. Most of the actors are unknown to the west, but big stars of russian cinema and TV. Nikita Efremov does a remarkable performance, as she would have lived through the Great Patriotic War.
My review is for the original uncut 416 minute long russian minseries.
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6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Russian Mini TV Series gets an Edit!, 29 Nov. 2011
By 
Tommy Dooley "Tom" (London, England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Bomber [DVD] (DVD)
This is a Russian made for TV mini series that has been cut to play the role of a feature film. It was originally eight parts of around 50 minutes each, and has been edited down, to a not inconsiderable 3 hours. It tells the story of Andrey and Katia who are to be married. After being separated for nigh on two years they are thrown together when he is ordered to drop a special agent behind enemy lines; that agent turns out to be his betrothed. During the mission they are shot down and the Germans are onto them.

This is the occupied area of Bobrinsky where the Germans have set up a V2 facility from where they can bomb Moscow. The mission was to join up with the Partisans and coordinate efforts to destroy the facility. At the facility POW's are used as slave labour to do the Germans bidding and are despatched with ruthless efficiency once they have gone beyond useful. What follows is the story of how the couple fare through many an adventure. There are sub plots all over the place with good and bad on both sides, and intermittent action.

There are plot holes and the film does jump around; there are even places where sub titles come up and there has been no dialogue. All of this could be down to the aforementioned editing. There is some excellent CGI work as well as real time action and some very authentic equipment etc. On the downside there are an awful lot of coincidences, the sort Dickens was so fond of all those years ago. Add to that some less than subtle plot contrivances and it starts to become a bit of a stretch, especially when the melodrama is cranked up to breaking point (last minute rescues etc).

The acting is all pretty much good to brilliant and the production standards are as good as anything you expect, it is just the areas I have mentioned that took it away for me,. Still I did enjoy it and did it all in one sitting, so it definitely kept me interested. I would like to have seen the fuller version and to have given a more favourable write up, but at the end of the day it is above average, hence the four stars but only just. If you like Russian cinema I would recommend, `The Star', `or `Fortress of War' as good companion pieces.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars The bomber bombs, 19 Jan. 2013
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This review is from: The Bomber [DVD] (DVD)
I'm not sure whether the title refers to the aircraft which was only on screen for a few moments or to the pilot who lives a charmed life. The americanised subtitles comprised fatuous errors in punctuation, spelling and grammar and really required closer attention. This three-hour saga was filled with coincidences, breathtaking near-misses and a convoluted plot which left one wondering who were the good partisans and who were the baddies. The computer-generated air-raids were too obvious, but at least better than stitched-in documentary sequences. The suggestion that the head of Stalin's security, Beria, was worried about a possible V-2 rocket attack on Moscow and was keen to get his hands on V-2 data is utterly ludicrous. By the time when the V-2s were available for use, Stalingrad had long fallen and the Nazis were in retreat. In any case the Germans planned to use these missiles on the western front, and the bulk of them rained down on London and Antwerp. The hero of the story is a bomber pilot whose escapades and escapes defy all imagination. The anti-hero is the plane's navigator who literally comes to a sticky end. The only thing which remains in my memory is that the SS captain was a dead ringer for Anthony Hopkins. I even thought for a minute that Hopkins had traded in his Welsh accent for a German one. At least the film was cheap at the price. I would not have wished to pay more.
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5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars very enterrtaining, 5 Mar. 2012
By 
Anthony Brown (LONDON) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Bomber [DVD] (DVD)
very entertaining film . would have liked to have seen full version ; though well edited . the plane he was flying was a PE2 which is authentic , but it looks cgi . The romance is a bit far fetched Ie coincidental but adds extra interest to the story . Characters good and bad are convincing . so much better than a hollywood effort such as Where Eagles Dare ; though I do like that film . Have enjoyed all the Russian war films so far which is about 4 now
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Russian WW2 film so far, 2 May 2014
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This review is from: The Bomber [DVD] (DVD)
For some time the cover had put me off, but as it's cheap to buy I gave it a go and am not disappointed. The acting and filming seem very good to me, with great battle scenes in the forests and Russian steppes that don't look like CGI. The attention to detail of German and Russian uniforms and equipment is really impressive. In political terms it's well balanced, with criticism of the NKVD as well as the SS & Gestapo, as it explains the motives behind their actions in understandable ways (in view of and considering the hostilities between the occupying forces, collaborators and the partisans). The characters are believable and not one dimensioned and show the good and bad in both sides. Some reviews have said there are two many romantic love scenes but I don't agree, as there are plenty of action scenes: battles, chases, prison camp brutalities etc etc. It's a good story too and I'm not giving anything away (as it says on the DVD cover) that it's about a shot down Russian bomber pilot trying to escape from the local Nazi occupied area.
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Eastern Promise, 20 Nov. 2011
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This review is from: The Bomber [DVD] (DVD)
There is much to praise in this Russian production, but in the end it is dominated the fact it has been edited down to a mere three hours from an eight part TV series. The result of this butchery is too many clipped scenes and fade-to-black scenes changes, presumably as they forced a cut where one did not want to be.

It doesn't feel as if the story has suffered - most TV series are full of mid-season padding anyway, let's be honest - but it does mean it never stops looking and feeling like a TV show rather than a feature movie.

Despite this, and a subtitles which can be a little bit ahead of the action, it is a very watchable show. I found myself rooting for the heroes, booing the baddies (and no, they are not only the Germans) and there is enough unpredictability in the plot to keep you guessing right to the end.

So not a classic, but a notable effort given it's different viewpoint on the War.
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The Bomber [DVD]
The Bomber [DVD] by Vitaliy Vorobiov (DVD - 2011)
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