The Gift to Stalin Image

Mixed or average reviews - based on 6 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: Set against the sweeping beauty of the Kazakh steppes, Gift is the heartwarming tale of a young orphaned Jewish boy who is sent into exile during a Stalinist purge, but saved by a gruff older Muslim. Gorgeously photographed, the film exhibits the kind of charm that critics have compared to Cinema Paradiso and Il Postino. (Seagull Films) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 6
  2. Negative: 0 out of 6
  1. Reviewed by: Jeannette Catsoulis
    Mar 18, 2011
    Immersed in the alien beauty of the Kazakh steppe, "The Gift to Stalin" moves slowly but engages thoroughly.
  2. Reviewed by: Russell Edwards
    Mar 17, 2011
    Script weaknesses overwhelm ethnographic interest, historical tragedy and some solid performances in period drama "The Gift to Stalin."
  3. Reviewed by: Eric Hynes
    Mar 17, 2011
    Alternating between impressive and pedestrian shot-making, professional and amateurish acting, the film aims for gravitas and entertainment but only occasionally achieves either.
  4. Reviewed by: V.A. Musetto
    Mar 18, 2011
    Beautifully filmed and well-acted, "The Gift to Stalin," directed by Rustem Abdrashev, has its schmaltzy, cliched moments, including an unnecessary finale in Jerusalem.
  5. Reviewed by: Christopher Bell
    Mar 18, 2011
    The Gift to Stalin could have benefited from a less complex approach, something that would've actually hit the notes the filmmaker had aimed for. Unfortunately, he needed to try it all. Little of it succeeds, which can be rather draining at times, and not in the way he intended it to be.
  6. Reviewed by: David Fear
    Mar 18, 2011
    The historical tragedy that's dramatized is heartrending; the movie itself is merely one cliché piled atop another.