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4.3 out of 5 stars16
4.3 out of 5 stars
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Citadel is being billed as `Burnt by the Sun 2' but is actually the final part in Nikita Mikhalkov's trilogy that started with the original Oscar winning `Burnt by the sun' way back in 1994. Then it returned with `Exodus - Burnt by the Sun 2' (2010) yes it is called number two too and to be honest it was a right load of plop so describing that one as a `number two' is the most accurate. But still irritating numerology aside this one is actually miles better - still not as good as the first one but follow ups rarely are.

This time we see Mikhalkov playing the beleaguered Commander Kotov who has been imprisoned, fallen from grace and is now in a penal battalion being forced to take a German stronghold called The Citadel in what is a suicide charge. Stalin's Order 227 `Not a step back' is used to great effect and the use of anti retreat units which all actually happened. Kotov's daughter who famously got out her breasts in the last one for a dying soldiers last wish, has returned and this time, thankfully, manages to keep her kit on. She has lost her voice though due to trauma, and I am guessing that was a result of the terrible script from the last film.

She is a nurse and a pioneer and still gets into numerous scrapes but everything is believable this time. We have more or less the same actors as before and there are flash backs to part 1and this time Kotov, as part of his rehabilitation, gets to meet Stalin. This is played with delicious malevolence by Maksim Sukhanov who played him in the last one too. He also finally makes it home but then finds he has to fight to get back his good name and reputation which ultimately leads back to the Citadel of the title.

There is some CGI of the planes etc and some good action scenes but this is more thoughtful and reflective similar to the original and has been heavily edited for the foreign market as in Russia this is to be a TV mini series, it still runs to 150 minutes though. It is in Russian with good sub titles and is generally well acted, directed and good production values. This production does stand up in its own right and is a better tribute to Mikhalkov's abilities and I think it is a fine end to the story so am going for 4 stars but I am feeling generous today.
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on 15 December 2013
The final part character's are varied more complex their lives shaped by twin evils of Stalin and Hitler . I especially felt Nadezhda Mikhalkova strong performance ignore the critics. Relationship between Kotov and NkVd Colonel Mitya driven by destructive love or lust for Kotov's wife leaving in a impossible situation. Inventive story and opening sequence . Stalin scene probably a how cold and calculating the way he behaved, but Stalin had the sense to leave military planning to more capable General such a Zhukov so much he resented his success and tried to destroy him after the war.
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on 17 May 2014
A well made movie though poor sub-titles, lying below the screen ruined the movie enough for me to drop one star maybe even two stars. The story line is reasonable (though a little unbelievable in places), the acting is excellent and the photography is also good. I recommend this movie as being alot better than the junk coming out of Hollywood.
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on 11 January 2014
It may have been Exodus - the first part of this two-part Russian war film series - which got me first gripped and inspired by some excellent Russian war themed cinematography. I remember being stunned as my first moving and inspiring viewing of Exodus ended then without a conclusion. To save others the pain, Citadel is the sequel (both can now be obtained in one package) and has now completed and fulfilled my experience - though I wish it could continue. Nikita Mikhalkov, the director of this absorbing, exciting, inspiring, moving film during World War II also plays a superb lead role in it. I am totally baffled by some bad reviews of it. It has some really original and creative ideas and perspective on war with so much more involving the people and relationships within it. Easily now one of my favourite films.
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on 4 May 2014
To watch this wonderful film of great acting and action you should watch all three in the series. This film shows that not all films have to be in english
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on 23 August 2013
This film belongs to the trilogy of Burned by the Sun, Exodus, and now Citadel. Not too gruesome, it has some even
amusing bits, That`s Russians for you.
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on 7 June 2015
It's Awesome! just make sure you buy and watch the first two parts before you watch this one.
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on 8 January 2015
Good one, lots of action
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on 28 February 2015
Good entertainment DVD
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on 7 April 2015
Great authentic DVD
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