Customer Reviews: The Soviet Story - 30 Languages - 2 Disc Set (NTSC & PAL)
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on March 1, 2011
I knew a lot about the Soviet regime (I grew up in a Communist country). Still, this movie is shocking and, as far as I know, genuine and based on facts, documents, and eyewitness reports. Naked, although shocking and thought-provoking truth. People interviewed in the movie are not some obscure conspiracy theorist -- they are known experts in history, international politics, and Soviet dealings (Davies, Sokolov, Bukovsky, or formed Soviet spy, now writer, Suvorov). The movie summarizes what is known about Nazi German atrocities along with Soviet Russian atrocities, what is known about the plan (followed by actions, such as Soviet invasions of Poland, Baltic republics, and Finland) of Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia to divide Europe, and also not widely known facts about collaboration between Gestapo and NKVD in the early years of the WWII, that resulted, for example, in shipping Jews who escaped the Nazis back to German-occupied territories, where most of them perished. One of the main points of the documentary is that Germany had a chance to reform, sanitize its leadership from the Nazis. Russia has never prosecuted communist crimes against humanity. German Nazis have been chased all over the World and brought to justice. Russian communist perpetrators of crimes against humanity are enjoying protection of not only Russia but also, indirectly, former WWII allies. I keep being amazed by the naïveté of the Western European and World leaders when watching the political dealings with Russia. This movie is an absolute must for anybody interested in history and politics.
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on November 10, 2009
Occasionally there are films of such import to historical understanding that they stand out head over heels over all else...This is one such film. It supports the thesis that, not only was Nazism the heir to Communism, but that its leaders, Hitler, and Lenin, and Stalin, substantially cooperated with one another and learned from one another. Nazism was only different from Communism is that it was ethnically and racially based...whereas Communism was economically and class based. Philosophically, as Goebbels publicly wrote, they were the same, in their employment of repression, and mass murder, and fear to achieve their "idealistic" aims.

The romantic leanings of too many in the West, then as now, always seem to pit early Communism against being good and idealistic, and the other being pure evil. This DVD demonstrates like no other film, that nothing could be further from the truth...for Nazism and Communism, aside from occasional distrust, from the beginning, were bound together with bonds of friendship, affection, and cooperation. That alliance ceased when Hitler broke his written pact with Stalin in their common plans for dividing a post war had ALREADY been achieved with their joint invasion of Poland. It's often portrayed that it was Hitler who began WW II. True, as far as it goes...But the full truth is that, in fact, it was both Hitler and Stalin who planned and executed the 1939 attack on Poland.

In addition, this DVD is an excellent antidote in smashing the illusions of all too many North American liberals, and Euro and South American leftists...who still believe that was only Stalin who abandoned the "ideals" of become one of the two bloodiest murders of the 20th century. These illusions still exist today, in the all too gentle reminder, that Lenin was somehow the "good" communist. In fact, this DVD documents Lenin's class warfare and mass murder of ten million, as the ideological "solution" paving the way for his "ideal" communist state...and the "New Soviet Man". This Hitler directly copied with the "New German Man". Nazism also emulated the concentration camps, which were FIRST established in Lenin's regime....BEFORE Stalin....and served as the Nazi template for the Holocaust....20 years before it occurred.

"The Soviet Story" is a powerful documentary...for it speaks the truth with first person interviews, and weaves a quite convincing review of the Soviet era historic documentation...key parts of which, were smuggled out of today's "new" Russian state apparatus. In fact, it's well to remember Putin's absurd statements about the "fall of the USSR" being one of the "great tragedies" of the twentieth century. This is why this DVD remains the new Russia still retains significant elements of the old USSR. It remains timely, because the same coterie of delusional western intellectuals still remain fuzzy about the harsh reality of Russian history. As the reviewer for "The Economist" wrote, this film is a powerful antidote to the "sanitization of the past".

For Americans, history will show a period of hesitation about the post war intentions of Stalin. But by 1948, those intentions were abundantly clear to all but the most willful deniers. The key roles of George Kennan, Harry Truman, and Dwight Eisenhower defined our initial responses to the USSR. Containment in it's peaceful impulse, and in its defensive impulse, in NATO and MAD, BOTH played their role in the evolution of the leadership of the USSR. The world did avoid a nuclear holocaust. And, as an addendum on the ending of the Cold War, it's well to note that it was the "big tent" Republican, Ronald Reagan, who opposed his own right wing, to negotiate with Micheal Gorbachev. Both, along with Lech Walesa and the Pope, with the big exception of the old Yugoslavia, paved the way to the relatively bloodless denouement to the Cold War.

I can therefore also highly recommend: The Rebellion of Ronald Reagan: A History of the End of the Cold War, by Jim Mann.
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on December 22, 2010
This film is a must see. To little is known about the true ruthlessness of the Soviet era. As pointed out in the film it did not stop when Stalin died. American schools do not teach this and a recent column by Barry Rubin pointing out just how this has been glossed over and ignored by virtually everybody. Not only should you watch it but it should be shared with all who will sit for it.
One critique I might have is when they go into Trotsky's murder they should tell you that he set up Lennin's secret policde and did mor than a little murder himself. He was no marter.
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on November 27, 2009
From its inception, the story of the Soviet Union was writ in blood. However, the Empire's apologists persistently deny the brutality and extent of Soviet crimes against humanity, most particularly including Soviet cooperation with the Third Reich. As a result, Latvian director Edvins Snore was burned in effigy by Neo-Soviet Russians. It is an ominous badge of honor. Happily, that film that you are not supposed to see, The Soviet Story, is evidently available for sale here.

Soviet Story acts as an effective corrective to the popular notion that the Communist experiment only turned horrific when Stalin ascended to power. The film documents orders mandating mass executions, estimated in the tens of millions, originating with the father of the revolution, Lenin.

Still, it is devilishly difficult to outdo Stalin's sheer capacity for terror. The heart of Soviet Story explores the close ideological similarities and barbaric collusion between the Soviet Socialists of Stalin and the National Socialists of Hitler. There is an eerie sequence juxtaposing thematically similar propaganda posters from both regimes, side-by-side on-screen. Even more damning are the documents Snore uncovers establishing close links between the SS and the Soviet NKVD (the precursor to the KGD), discussing among other issues, the "Jewish Question." Indeed, Soviet Story is most illuminating when discussing the ways in which the more advanced Soviet killing machine served as the inspiration and model for the Holocaust.

Snore has produced a chilling indictment of the Soviet experience with Socialism. He calls some very convincing witnesses, including former dissident Vladimir Bukovsky (essentially a dissident yet again under the neo-Soviet regime), and the eloquent Cambridge historians Norman Davies and George Watson. As evidence, he produces some shocking archival film and documents. However, as the film makes clear, none of those who did (and still do) the Soviet dirty work has ever faced justice for their crimes. All told, Snore has produced a passionate but thoroughly reasoned case against the bloodiest regime of the twentieth century. His only misstep is the periodic use of animated titles, which feel like the commercial bumpers in a History Channel special.

While this is a period of history I consider myself well versed in, Communist oppression was so ruthless and pervasive, Soviet Story was able to catalogue many fresh horrors I was not previously aware of. Probably the scariest aspect of the film is its timeliness, releasing as the Putin's puppet regime increasingly embraces its Stalinist roots. Everybody who wishes to continue thinking themselves well-informed should see this film.
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on February 12, 2012
It is estimated that Hitler killed between 11-17 million people in his camps and extermination programmes. And I am so thankful that Hollywood has produced numerous factual documentaries and fact based films exposing the horror of the Nazis and the Holocaust. It strikes me as strange that there is no similar size body of work by Hollywood exposing the 20 million murdered by Soviet Communist leader Josef Stalin or the 40 million murdered by Chinese Communist leader Mao Zedong or the other atrocities of Communism. While precise figures may never be known, it is estimated that as many as 259 million people were murdered under Communist regimes between 1917-1987.

With a growing number people from labour leaders to politicians to those who consider themselves the intellectual elite openly endorsing socialism and communism as a model for America, this film together with "Faith of the Century: A History of Communism" and "Socialism A Clear and Present Danger" are films every American should watch. The promised utopia has never been realised by any socialist/communist country and communism has been responsible for more death and suffering in the last 100 years than any other single system of belief. Even today, political prisons operate in countries like China, North Korea, Vietnam and elsewhere. And there are indications that a growning number of former Russian Communists including Putin are wanting to return to the old ways.
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on December 9, 2009
It's interesting to observe how Stalin's "big lie" has been embraced by Russian power brokers and various groups within Russian society in their objection to the new historical documentary, "The Soviet Story". Russian historian Alexander Dyukov and Muscovite nationalist hooligans have come to the defence of the Soviet Union's criminal past by taking part in the burning of an effigy of the filmmaker, Edvins Šnore. The film in fact is not an attack upon Russians or the Russian nation (millions of Russians also fell victim to their past criminal regime), but is a scholarly investigation of politics and the sordid, malignant ideology that pervaded the Soviet hegemon. In light of the film's confronting historical exposés, it seems that Russian identity and national consciousness in Vladimir Putin's Russia have been somewhat shaken.

The film had its premiere in the European Parliament in April 2008 and it uncompromisingly and graphically alerts the senses on different levels through powerful presentations of the barbarity and deadly deeds of Lenin and the Stalinist regime. Narrated by Jon Strickland, the film is skilfully made by the Latvian director Edvins Šnore, who spent over ten years in collecting and researching materials for its production.

It covers Soviet crimes such as The Great Famine Of Ukraine (1932-33), the massacres of Katyn and Bykivnia, the mass murders of the K.G.B. (Russian secret police) and K.G.B. medical experiments on thousands of prisoners in one of the Magadan Soviet death-camps in Siberia. These experiments were often performed on live victims and are crimes against humanity that are not widely known about. The Baltic nations of Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania were almost obliterated through Stalinist policies of repression, deportation and well organised drives towards the Russification of their respective national identities. To intensify this process, Russians were relocated en mass to populate these small Baltic republics. Separate national development was no longer be tolerated in Soviet life - only Russian national development would be countenanced.

The first Marxist regime was established in Russia by Vladimir Lenin and the film's director explores this period of mature and consummate Marxism in detail, when tyranny, murder and genocide were directed against populations for the purpose of facilitating Socialism and restructuring society. Literary Historian George Watson speaks of Karl Marx as "the ancestor of modern political genocide [who] publicly advocated racial [and class] extermination." The film is gripping in its depiction of the close co-operation between the Soviet regime and Nazi Germany, and their shared political and philosophical goals and aspirations. The Nazis would learn about concentration camps, prisoner experiements and mass extermination techniques from the Russo-Soviet regime well before Hitler's invasion of Eastern Europe.

Although this award winning film is well researched and based upon expert, documentary and archival evidence, some Russian interpretations of "The Soviet Story" are rather at odds with the presented facts and evidence. They view the documentary as anti-Russian rhetoric that has been based upon false documentation, but they've produced no evidence to refute anything. It's all too reminiscent of the propaganda and denials of the Soviet Communist regime of the past. For example, the Russian leadership denied any Soviet involvement in the Katyn Forest massacres of about 22,000 people in 1940. Through extensive investigations they were finally forced to abandon their lies and admit to their crimes in 1990. For fifty years the Russo-Soviets (including many Western governments and historians) calumniated history by wrongfully attributing these mass murders to Nazi Germany.

Unlike the victims of Katyn, the mass murders of Vinnytsia in Ukraine (1937-38) were carried out in peacetime - years before the outbreak of WWII. The Russo-Soviet regime had also accused Nazi Germany of the Vinnytsia massacres; however, through various detailed investigations, including medical examinations of the corpses, it was established that this crime against humanity was ordered by Stalin, executed by Khrushchev and committed by Soviet security forces, prior to the German invasion of the Soviet Union. About 9,500 Ukrainians were murdered in Vinnytsia and were buried in three mass graveyards. Based upon concocted charges, most of these victims were sentenced to 10 years in a labour camp, without the right of correspondence; however, the Russo-Soviet hierarchy soon "discovered" that it was much easier and cheaper to dispose of a population by killing them rather than incarcerating them in labour camps. The film also deals with the particular issue of Stalin and Molotov's method of disposal of humanity by converting labour camp imprisonment to mass murder. The Nazis would in turn exploit the Soviet atrocities for their own propaganda purposes while humanity, caught between these two totalitarian regimes, would continue to perish. It was 1988 when the Soviet regime officially admitted to the Vinnytsia massacres. Interestingly, the current Russian leadership of Putin and Medvedev consider these crimes against humanity, (and all other Soviet crimes) as manifestations of Stalin's strong leadership.

The Soviet Union was an allied power that slaughtered its own citizens on an "industrial" scale and then attempted to deny and conceal its crimes against humanity.
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on November 16, 2015
A hard dvd to watch. A bit of history that, even though I thought that I've had good history teachers, even in college, I never knew before. It puts the recent Russian aggression in Ukraine in clearer perspective. This is a dvd that anyone who has an interest in 20th century history should find interesting.
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on March 29, 2014
It is amazing how much like todays current events are leading in the same direction as this Soviet Story. It is also the story of the book of Judges. How easy it is for new generations to fall into the same errors as our fathers did. The impact on every generation and every nation is more than evident. Yet! Some how my generation didn't fully understand what took place in WWII our else they failed to instill in the succeeding generations the importance of submitting ourselves to the obedience of grace .To God's credit he hasn't destroyed us yet .He keeps reworking the clay into a image that seams good for him to make ,what it should look like is in the mind of the potter. It is truly amazing how God uses every thing in our life to perfect in us all the qualities of the Christ .
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on December 8, 2013
The most important story apathetic Americans don't want to know. We know through and through the sociopathic structure of Nazism as it pertained to attempting Genocide of the Jewish race, at least in all occupied territories yet we knew nothing of the Empire in the East whom inspired the Nazi Party and indeed it is difficult to find significant differences between the two totalitarian philosophies. Shamefully, this documentary will be seen or believed by precious few in America before it's too late. Communism was committing atrocities of the type Nazis did except they did for ~ 80 yrs. Further, it's little known that Mao Zedong, murderer of as many as 80,000,000 of his own people who perfected the purge (of the committed ranks) long before Stalin adopted the tactic
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on December 10, 2010
Shortly, this video unmasks the supposed "humanitarian" face of Communism, which is just as cruel and beastly as its younger brother National Sotialism, but very much capable to "dress as an angel of light" and capable to spread just like cancer.
All the news about the alliance and friendship of Nazis and Komms were torn away from Soviet libraries' archives, after 1941, just like Orwell describes in '1984'.

But even if one can despise Truth, spit on Truth, trample on Truth, noone can ever destroy Truth, because God is Truth.
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