Enemy at the Gates

Enemy at the Gates

Jean-Jacques Annaud (2001)

125min
15 Certificate
Wed 27 Jan 11:20pm - 1:50am Sony Movies Action
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Review

Our Score
Featuring three miscast stars and a pedestrian script, this uninspiring drama focuses on the battle for Stalingrad, one of the turning points of the Second World War. According to director Jean-Jacques Annaud's version of events, the lengthy conflict (summer 1942 to February 1943) boiled down to a sniper duel between legendary Russian shepherd Vassily Zaitsev (Jude Law) and German nobleman Major König (Ed Harris). Unfortunately, Annaud dilutes the psychological aspects of their confrontation and the four suspenseful sniper sequences with a dramatically undernourished romantic subplot involving Rachel Weisz. Saddled with a spectacularly awful script and a director clearly more concerned with epic visuals, Law, Weisz and Joseph Fiennes (as Soviet propaganda genius Danilov) fail to rise to the occasion, a central flaw magnified when acting heavyweight Harris takes command of the screen. Great to look at, but torture to listen to, Annaud's overlong history lesson is a prime example of how not to make a war movie.

Summary

A Soviet sniper becomes a national hero during the Second World War Battle of Stalingrad, so the Germans enlist a crack marksman of their own to deal with him. A lethal contest of wits follows as the two sharpshooters stalk each other, while the Russian also finds himself caught up in a love triangle with one of his friends. Drama, starring Jude Law, Ed Harris, Rachel Weisz, Joseph Fiennes, Bob Hoskins and Ron Perlman.

Cast & Crew

Vassili Zaitsev Jude Law
Maj Konig Ed Harris
Tania Chernova Rachel Weisz
Commissar Danilov Joseph Fiennes
Nikita Krushchev Bob Hoskins
Koulikov Ron Perlman
Mother Filipov Eva Mattes
Sacha Filipov Gabriel Thomson
Director Jean-Jacques Annaud
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: PathéGuidance: Violence and swearing.Available on: video and DVD
Drama