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  • The producer was able to pull the Russia-Ukraine title all in one piece despite the events of 2014 in Kiev. Probably the bulk of the scenes was shot in 2013.

    The storyline goes on about a true WW2 Red Army female sniper with the highest confirmed hit list ever. Check out the Wikipedia.

    A sad personal drama wound into the 1941 context when Wehrmacht was advancing in Southern Ukraine, USSR.

    With a moderate budget, as it appears to me, the makers were restricted to a moderate combined arms warfare footage, but of a very decent quality.

    Most moving is the tragedy of the main character who lives through the first two years of war and a personal tragedy.

    It is not a blockbuster action-filled war theme that must be a dangling carrot for a moviegoer but rather a biographical sniper daily routine and mentality.

    On seeing the movie I was a bit puzzled why its name bears "Battle for Sevastopol" as it is only touched upon.

    A mind-blowing alternative to the American Sniper. You decide on your own.
  • I was riveted by this movie and I don't understand any Russian! This movie is absolutely about Lyudmila Pavlichenko and her recollections than it is about the "Battle of Sevastopol" any more than the movie "Enemy at the Gates" being a portrayal of the scope of the Battle of Stalingrad versus the adventures of Vasili Zaitzev. I would love to see this with English subtitles but would rather leave it 100% as with the actors speaking their parts in their native voices rather than have it butchered by dubbing. While there is a little stereotyping of communist leaders and their acts and gestures, the movie puts a human and personal touch on the real fighters of the Soviet Union in WW2, the young people who have to do the real fighting and would rather just live their lives in peace.

    Most "heroes" never wanted the spotlight and didn't do what they did for glory or fame. A moving and powerful movie.
  • JohnVanBrunt18 May 2017
    10/10
    Wow.
    Although it's mostly in Russian with subtitles, I was drawn in deeply and remained so throughout the duration. This is the most gripping WW2 film I've seen since Saving Private Ryan. The direction, acting, cinematography are all top notch. It tells the story of heroic Russian sniper without glamorizing war. Instead the horror of war is pervasive and though she is a survivor her story is tragic. It's also very interesting to get a glimpse of Stalin-era Soviet culture. It's a must see for anyone interested in WW2, history, biographies, or intense drama.
  • gthgerg19 August 2016
    I would like to share with you my thoughts. First of all I loved the film. You get real war movie. The visuals was not really trouble. Although less spectacular element in it. Instead of a serious war drama I could compare the film. What WWII was transposed to the environment. The characters were well developed and realistic. Real emotion could be seen on their faces. What I liked even more the use of the camera. Very simple scenes have been able to make it interesting. It maintains the interest in the story. I would not compare this film to the film Enemy at the Gates. Those who look to a slower but more emotional love war drama to expect.
  • slikts3 May 2015
    It's a weird time to see a joint Ukrainian and Russian film project to come out, considering the breakdown in relations between the two countries. The production apparently begun before the conflict, and it's an achievement in itself that it's been seen through, since a project like this probably wouldn't be possible today.

    Coming in the wake of Russian WWII-themed schlock like Stalingrad (2013), I didn't expect too much, and there was a somewhat similar, almost gaudy quality present, but overall the movie was much more decent, particularly considering that its budget was about 5 times smaller than Stalingrad's. The actors were well cast, with Yuliya Peresild's performance creating a main character that can grow on you, and some interesting supporting characters. This brings me to the point that, despite the title, the movie's focus isn't as much on the port city of Sevastopol as it's on the Soviet sniper Lyudmila Pavlichenko, and the movie being called "Battle for Sevastopol" betrays an apparent lack of confidence in selling a biopic of a female sniper. There's a fair amount of action in the movie, however, so I don't think that the kind of people who wouldn't go for a biopic would come away disappointed or feeling mislead.
  • First of all the movie is misnamed. It is no more about the battle for Sevastopol than Dr. Zhivago was about the Russian Revolution. A better title might have been, "Lyudmila's War." This was an excellent character study of the battle between the inhumanity of war and the humanity of the people who are forced to wage it. I found the film to be very well done and once into it, had to see it through. The war scenes were vivid and believable, and the characters were played realistically. One could see the changes that overcame the heroine, Lyudmila Pavlichenko, who was initially tepid about killing but warmed to the task--to the point of actually relishing in it. She reveled in competing with men--even in an environment that was nominally committed to gender equality. We witnessed a transformation from a studious girl, who was never appreciated by her stern military father, to a killing machine (who refused to leave the battlefield, even when seriously wounded)--with snatches of the frailties of emerging womanhood. It is a complex tale, one that should be watched at least twice to realize its full impact.
  • teedee9115 March 2017
    Incredible, really moving. I would have never known she existed until seeing the movie. I wish there were more about her life after the war but there is very little information available online or in print. Absolutely amazing story, highly recommended! If you liked "American Sniper", then put this movie on your 'Must See' list.
  • I think that it is quite a decent war movie, at par or better than "Enemy at the gates". There is very good performance for the main character. Cliché of Soviet communist organizer in US; but movie shall have a non good communist character, as real life had at the time. Very chilling and excellent scene of 10 year old girl reciting "Kill German" poem, and in all likelihood the girl was killed herself few months down the road. I waiting for English version to show to my friends, but translation going to be very difficult and will result in lower quality - a lot of important subtle messages in the movie is use of Russian, Ukranian dialect of Russian, and Ukranian languages, as well as some subtle elements to Russian-Jewish culture.
  • Lyudmila Pavlichenko is a good student who can never match the ideals of her austere NKVD, Officer father. Then war breaks out and it is discovered that she is a crack shot. So she is made to join the snipers after the Germans invade in 1941 through Operation Barbarossa. She is also a woman with the needs of such and has already attracted a few suitors, one is aspiring doctor – however, she is more enamoured with her commanding officer.

    The fates of war mean that you must seize today what may be gone tomorrow and that is a theme that is more or less a constant throughout this. It follows the plight of the Russians as they retreat across their vast country until they are able to build up their forces to give the invading Nazi's the righteous kicking they so keenly deserve. This though ends with the stand at Sevastopol and Lyudmila's personal and actual battles on and off the field of battle.

    Now the action scenes are all very good, the character development is fine too. The acting is all above average and the CGI is good in most parts. Some of the Americans are dubbed though which I always find annoying but that is a small gripe for what is in the main part a really good war film with full on emotions thrown in for added pathos and drama; this is not up to the calibre of say 'The Admiral' but is still deserving of a watch – recommended.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Of course it's not exactly as it happened. The woman was married with a son before join the Army. I discovered it on Google(I hope you won't consider this information as a spoiler). That doesn't changes the fact that it's a good war movie based on true events. To tell the truth it was the first time i heard that Russians had women snipers. About the technical details now: I liked the black and white photograph, the places, the whole story generally. I admit that it could be better. I can't say it's the best war movie ever for World War II, but it's good enough to watch it without to get bored from a different side than American heroic movies(you all know what i mean...). If you are expecting John Rambo, search for something else. This movie is not for you :P Enjoy.
  • Before seeing Bitva za Sevastopol I didn't expect it to intrigue me as much as the other two Russian flicks I covered - Ispytanie and Chempiony. Thankfully, I was wrong.

    The main character of the movie - Lyudmila Pavlichenko - gets an excellent performance. You care about her, she is likable and badass at moments. The supporting cast shares excellence as well and as the film continues their characters get better and better. There's a great amount of action, provided with nice cinematography and some blood. Fortunately Bitva za Sevastopol isn't all about the action but for its story, which gets you more and more intrigued as the minutes pass with moments of war genre brilliance.

    A small issue I have is that it begins a bit too slow but the action, the drama, the characters pay off for the slow beginning.

    As a whole, Bitva of Sevastopol turns out as a personal favourite of mine, with its own way of getting a 10/10.
  • The story of Lyudmila Pavlichenko, the female Russian sniper who killed 309 Germans on the Eastern Front in WW2.

    Fascinating subject: the woman who was one of the most successful snipers in history and centred around one of the most heroic defensive battles of WW2. Should be an easy enough task to make this into a good movie, right?

    Wrong. Somehow the writers and director Sergey Mokritskiy turn this story into something very lame. The battle scenes are reasonably well done, and quite realistic, but it's the rest that messes this up. Romantic sub-plots, the Eleanor Roosevelt angle, the political stuff: they all seem half-baked and just filler.

    Add in some atrocious supporting performances - the "American" journalists (most seemed to be Russian pretending to be American) are particularly bad. Yuliya Peresild puts in a solid performance in the lead role though.

    Even the title is badly done - the Battle for Sevastopol actually takes up less than half of the movie is not the main focus of the film, Lyudmila Pavlichenko is.

    Concentrate on Lyudmila Pavlichenko, leave out all the half-baked romantic stuff, silly sub-plots and sentimentality, stick largely to battle scenes and give this a better title and it could have been really good. Lyudmila Pavlichenko deserves far better than the actual finished product.
  • If you're expecting a film like Fortress of War (2010), you're mistaken just like i was because this is a biographical film focusing on Lyudmila Pavlichenko who's a Soviet Union female sniper with 309 confirmed kills. I agree with the other reviewer who said that the title's quite misleading, this film's not mainly about the battle in Sevastopol itself. I don't understand why they didn't get a more befitting title for this film.

    With a non-linear storytelling style, this film shows the beforemath, the moment and the aftermath of the fearsome superiority of Pavlichenko aka "Lady Death" who hunted regular soldiers and officers in a battlefield during World War II. Yulia Peresild, who played Pavlichenko managed to portray the character really well. She's cold, suffering, heroic, and lovable, kinda reminds me of Mulan. I have to tell you the Russian dubbing for English parts are annoying, they should make Russian subtitles instead of dubbing. The war action scenes (shooting, camouflaging, covering, planning strategy, etc) even though interesting are too short which i'd estimate no more than 10% of the duration so it's overall drama and that's very unsatisfying.

    So if you like films about snipers such as Enemy At The Gates, American Sniper, you have to check this one out. I'd say this is isn't as good as Enemy At The Gates but it's as interesting as American Sniper.

    7/10
  • josedavilar31 December 2018
    This movie have became one of my favorites 2 war films that I have seen so far. It combines a personal biographical history, of the most successful female sniper during World War II (309) Kills. The movie also shows the diplomatic battle in USA for bringing the involvement of USA in 2 war. In one of the scenes that actually happens in Chicago 1942, she stood before large crowds, with this phrase: "Gentlemen, I am 25 years old and I have killed 309 fascist invaders by now. Don't you think, gentlemen, that you have been hiding behind my back for too long?". The script, performances, locations and shooting is just awesome, it makes you feel inside the eyes of Lyudmila Pavlichenko.

    Im surprised it has just a 7 at IMBD , maybe its because Americans doesn't like to be reminded that they were hiding from 2 world war for 2 years.
  • kosmasp28 March 2016
    To give us the single view from a member of the army and how the woman behind the gun went on to become who she became (soldier, reformist sort of and a person of "interest" or at least of some pull, concerning her voice), might have gone wrong, but the movie itself handles everything smoothly.

    That doesn't mean the ascend of the sniper is smooth. There are bumps and other hurdles she has to take. And her character gets tested too. The feeling of empowerment, the feeling of revenge, the feeling of love and sadness. It might seem like a roller-coaster ride at times, but it's not like feelings are just dismissed like that. They are there and there are periods where we feel certain things we might be ashamed of later. That doesn't make us less of human beings. Flaws are in us, it's ourselves who have to overcome them ...
  • I love this movie, even though it's not in English. I've seen many great movies, where I've had to read subtitles.

    It is based on a true story, about a courageous woman. You need to watch it for yourself.

    I don't want to spoil it for you.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Even if this is a biography, I was expecting a historical movie, war scenes and some action. The most of the movie is about complex romance, female soldiers and too much girl talks, and american woman. Unnecessary scenes not only made the movie longer but also much more boring (for example, do we have to watch some soldier's walking all down the hall... and some other walking.. and more walking ... and staring each other for minutes). And american first lady unnecessarily took too much time and it was not adding anything to the movie. Just a visit! Even shooting scenes did not leave any effect on me. The gun was shaking or she was shooting without keeping a serious posture. not realistic! Overall, this movie does not show the strength of Pavlichenko as Russians or Ukranians would like to see, rather the movie shows her as a weak, confused and reluctant person. Wasn't this movie about a war hero?

    Sadly, hollywood movie (Enemy at the Gates) shows the Russian perspective more realistically than this movie. 3/10.
  • The Battle of Sevastopol lasted from October 30 1941 until July 4th 1942 and became a huge and tactical victory for the Axis under The German Generalfeldmarschall Erich von Manstein. Why on earth the Russians would actually make a movie about such a big defeat in WW2 may at first be a mystery.

    However, after seeing this movie it is clear the movie does not in any way focus on the outcome of the battle of Sevastopol and not even the outcome of World War 2. Also, though packed with action, the movie does not constantly resort to horribly fantasized Russian 'superheroes' nor a constant flood of cgi monstrosities like the earlier 2013 Russian movie 'Stalingrad'. However a lot, and I mean a LOT, has been fantasized to thicken the storyline.

    The movie focuses on the (in)famous female Soviet sniper Lyudmila Pavlichenko. As a movie it is a pretty simple tale being told how Pavlichenko discovered her talent with a gun, got dragged into the war and why she made the trip the United States in 1942. However also omnipresent is her affection to several men throughout the movie. This flow of love stories almost constantly distracts from the horrors of war and the actual historical tale being told. Because of this, the meandering movie even gets quite tedious halfway through and the viewer is glad when hell breaks loose in a scene. That can't be the message the makers want to send out I reckon.

    As a movie coming from one of the participants in WW2 and certainly not one with a clean sheet when it comes to war crimes, it is rather painful to see how the movie does not want to touch that aspect of the horrors on the Eastern Front nor does it reflect on how the Holodomor divided the Ukrainians when it came to choosing either the German or Soviet side.

    Leaving aside any emotions, as being an action packed movie about a sniper, the tension of the movie falls short compared to, for instance, 'Enemy At The Gates'. Also the made-up German sniper (Google his name and you will only find reviews of this movie) in 'Bitva za Sevastopol' is more than a big wink at 'Enemy At The Gates' but in this movie the duel turns out only being a short scene without any further use for the storyline.

    For a Russian movie in general about world War 2 it is in a way a great improvement after the 2013 Stalingrad debacle but still a far cry from earlier Russian masterpieces such as 'Idi i Smotri' (1985). 'Bitva za Sevastopol' is Okay-ish, but nothing more.
  • A lot of nonsense was said in this reviews about this movie. American specialists of how Russians were living during 1935-1945 will tell you "their truth". In reality this movie is very accurate. I confirm it from all stories I'm hearing from my grandpas and grandmas who were living during those years as children. And remember, USSR won that war. In 1941 in relatively warm October when they stopped Germans next to Moscow. It wasn't winter. Secondly, Germans attacked on June 22nd. They had plenty of time to win. Wile British were running out to their island after 1 month of the war. French surrendered too instantly. Americans were too scared to fight. And Americans joined to war only in 1943-44 when Germans were very weak just to get their pie.
  • Enemy at the Gates is the ultimate Russian war movie and still remains number one in that genre. However, a new number two film for Russian war films has emerged: The Battle For Sevastopol. This unbelievable, but true, story of a Russian female sniper with over 300 confirmed kills boggles the mind from start to finish. She was shot twice, blown up twice from motar attacks, and suffered many other deprivations of war. But she was an expert marksman who not only survived several brutal years of German invasion of Russia, but killed hundreds of the enemy, including over two dozen male German snipers. Dubbed "Lady Death" by the media, she was a favorite of Eleanor Roosevelt and went on tour with the First Lady to raise funds for the war in a joint Russia-US effort. This film has excellent production values, as Fox goes all out. Don't miss it.
  • This is one of modern Russian movies made for the lowest common denominator. The plot and character motivations are over-the-top explained as if makers of the movie was very afraid someone at the very lowest end of intelligence scale will not understand everything. The main character is not likable and her background or motivations for being extremely reserved and grim person is never explained. Because of unsympathetic main character the whole movie is very hard to care about.

    Battle scenes are very few for such a movie and serve as illustrations rather than plot points. Some of the things taken from modern combat and movies are just silly, like navy seals style training and collecting tags from sniped enemies. That simply did not happen at that time in history. Sniping scenes are very weak, especially when main character hold the rifle it visually wobbles a lot until she pulls the trigger and gets perfect shot. It's just laughable. There's a cliché sniper-vs-sniper standoff subplot which ends way too quick, and ends in confusing "Han Solo shot first" situation.

    Also laughable are all the death scenes. Like actors came from some provincial theater and try to portray dying in a most over-the-top dramatic way.
  • borndribble25 November 2018
    I would highly recommend if your into strong female leads. I love seeing a world war 2 movie from a different countries perspective. Having a female be the main character in a war movie is also a perk! We don't see many movies like this. I thought the directing was unique and the cinematography was great as well. Yulia Pereslid's acting was AMAZING! Her acting alone had me tearing up. The only odd thing I noticed was that there were many vocie overs. Noticable voice overs. They did not blend in well at all. The voices were off and they were much louder then the other voices. I literally laughed out loud because they were all that bad. But overall, the film was very well made, so the poor voice overs surprised me very much.
  • After watching Enemy at the Gates and being keen to see another war movie with snipers, this one disappointed me a little. I've noticed someone thinks this one is better than Enemy at the Gates, but there were 3 points difference between them when rating, as a personal preference. So, don't expect too much from this movie. But otherwise, it has a strong emotional impact sometimes. Like every war movie, it shows you a little piece of what a war means, a little piece of the suffering associated with it through the loss, through the wounds both physically and psychologically, through the pain you see around, through the thoughts of being invaded and losing your freedom and to which the soviet woman replied: "I am ashamed to stay behind and do nothing!". Admirable position. A nice movie to watch, but still (I insist!), Enemy at the Gates is, by far, better!
  • Watching of this movie ended for me after 40 seconds, when i realized it has been dubbed like from the best Soviet days... We are in 2018! Learn that you dont have to do it and just use subtitles!

    Everything else is so badly under the shadow of this that it is not even worthy of mention!
  • mateifl17 June 2016
    It is ridiculously unrealistic. Life in Stalin's USSR depicted like a paradise with happy people and abundance of food (we are talking about 1 year after the end of the Great Terror), snipers that take out tanks and so on, German soldiers that attack in open field at walking pace and using no cover, and yet they make short work of a Russian defensive trench, and many more. Rudimentary dialogue, giving characters no psychological depth ("If you do not want to fight for your country, you are a coward"). Fragmented story. Millions of Soviet soldiers deserve a better depiction of the suffering and hardships they hand to endure in those years in order to bring victory to their country.
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