The Death of Stalin, directed by Armando Iannucci (who has previously satirised both the UK and the US government) and based on the comic book of the same name, is a black comedy detailing the aftermath of the eponymous dictator's death. It stars Jason Isaacs, Steve Buscemi, Rupert Friend and Jeffrey Tambor among others.
It has received very favourable reviews in the UK but not so much in Russia. Nikolai Starikov, a fringe nationalist politician and a hardcore Stalin stan who has written a book glorifying him, has said “The death of any person is not a subject for comedy, and even more so the death of a head of state and a great leader," [...] “He was the leader of a state that was an ally of Great Britain during the war. Could you imagine the Russians making a film mocking the death of a British king?” He also described the film as an “unfriendly act by the British intellectual class”.
Other detractors include:
- Vzglyad, a pro-Kremlin newspaper, who have called the film “a nasty sendup by outsiders who know nothing of our history”
- An adviser to Russia’s culture ministry, Pavel Pozhigailo, said that the film is merely a planned provocation and an incitement to hatred. However, Roman Volobuev, a Russian film-maker, has said that many Russian film & TV producers are huge fans of Armando's work, including one who has a portrait of Armando on his wall right next to one of Putin.
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More sexy Jason Isaacs for us, I guess. why are you like this, Russia