Burnt By The Sun

7.82 h 15 min1995X-RayR
1996 Oscar(r)-winning tale of a Soviet hero whose happy family is suddenly targeted by Stalin's secret police.
Nikita Mikhalkov
Andre OumanskyOleg MenchikovNikita Mikhalkov
InternationalDramaMilitary and War
Audio languages
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Supporting actors
Ingeborga Dapkounaite
Nikita Mikhalkov
Sony Pictures Classics
R (Restricted)
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4.6 out of 5 stars

359 global ratings

  1. 76% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 14% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 6% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 3% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 2% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

eric bredoReviewed in the United States on June 17, 2021
5.0 out of 5 stars
A classic
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For some reason this has been one of my favorite movies. The lead actor and his real life daughter add a sense of love and care amid the dangerous Stalinist era when all too many were "burnt by the sun" of revolution. The mood contrasts or juxtapositions are amazing. It's complicated, but a truly great movie.
3 people found this helpful
CGBSReviewed in the United States on June 19, 2020
4.0 out of 5 stars
Audio is Russian, not English
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The description of this video incorrectly states that the audio language is English. In reality, it is Russian with English subtitles. Other than that, this is an excellent movie.
6 people found this helpful
First girlReviewed in the United States on March 26, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
Fine Film-making
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This is a terrific Russian film. There is so much packed into it visually and culturally. The story is intriguing and keeps the viewer asking questions from start to finish. I highly recommend it. I'm sure my understanding is incomplete because my Russian isn't strong enough to watch without the English subtitles.
6 people found this helpful
James S. LesekeReviewed in the United States on February 21, 2003
5.0 out of 5 stars
Burned by "Uncle Joe"
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This Russian film is a cinematic treat. Beautifully filmed on photogenic locations this film starts out strong wanders around a bit and then rushes to its' end.
At times this film bogs down in its' slice of life depiction. Nevertheless, this makes the ending even more devastating, you know that these individuals' lazy, dreamy intellectual lives are over and happiness will never come to them again.
I am more willing to excuse some of the ham-handed bits of the movie, Russian movies, Russian literature; hell, most Russian art that makes it to the West has it moments of over-importance. We Americans seem to like our Russians brooding, mysterious, and over-bearing.
Not being a native speaker I can't comment on the dialog or the stilted acting, to me what these people are saying in the end really doesn't matter. It's the interactions between these people and their passions, petty complaints, and obsessions that make this movie.
Granted each character has more tics than a fine Swiss wristwatch but they are Intelligentsia.
"Burnt by the Sun" is solid film and yes, it does go over the top from time to time. However, the cinematography alone was worth an Oscar. I gorgeous colors used in the film breathe nostalgia and doom at the same time. Set design and costumes too add to this mix. The director succeeding in showing a certain class of people and their fragile lives and how those lives where steam-rollered by one of the 20th centuries worst despots.
17 people found this helpful
Patrick W. CrabtreeReviewed in the United States on September 12, 2007
5.0 out of 5 stars
Watch it over and over
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I'm really into Russian literature and film and this one is pure cream. Perfect casting, spectacular cinematography, and a great story. This film is never boring and, for Americans, yields an incredible sense of Russian culture under Stalin; however, the tale is not at all limited to misery -- there is no shortage of light humor and very interesting day to day life experience here.
This film tells the story of a (very likeable) major Russian hero, (retired and living at an art camp of sorts), and his lovely family, and how the tide of his life turns as a direct result of Stalin's lunatic madness and paranoia. Now, I want to say up front that I usually hate smooshy script and there's none of that here, albeit, there's a basic underlying love story.
If you can at all tolerate English subtitles, don't miss this one -- it's just super and SO much better than cheesy Hollywood fluff!
26 people found this helpful
James FergusonReviewed in the United States on June 27, 2004
5.0 out of 5 stars
Under the Shadow of Stalin
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Mikhalkov always had a flair for Chekhovian drama, and he doesn't disappoint the viewer in this movie, which essentially updates "The Cherry Orchard" to Stalinist Russia. What we get is a tumultuous day in the life of a theatre group in a tranquil rural community, lorded over by the proud Commander Kotov, as the small town prepares for the celebration of Stalin's first ride in an air balloon. Mikhalkov deftly mixes humor with pathos, the hallmark of all his movies, as the bucolic life is broken by the return of Mitya (impeccably played by Oleg Menshikov). We slowly get to learn of Mitya's mission with a profound sense of foreboding. The acting is purposely staged to give the scenes their rich theatrical air, yet there is a naturalism too, as Mikhalkov has such a fine eye for detail. To reveal too much of the movie is to give away its stunning climax. It was one of the first films to emerge from the post-Soviet era and gave Mikhalkov a broader international audience, earning him an Oscar in 1994.
48 people found this helpful
Nick from Shelburne VTReviewed in the United States on May 21, 2011
4.0 out of 5 stars
A Silly Start... Then Morphs Into A Powerful Narrative
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Starts out farcically, foolishly, and tempts you to walk away believing this is an amateurish, silly, foolish movie. Then the primary characters begin to interest you, to intrigue you... and one in particular enchants you. Then you begin to realize the gravity of what is happening, and that this particular story, involving but a few handfuls of characters, is a profound narrative on the madness, brutality inhumanity of Stalin's Soviet empire.
(Minor defect: the English subtitles cannot be turned off... somewhat irritating for those that can follow the Russian dialog and don't want the distraction of the subtitles).
8 people found this helpful
Stratiotes Doxha TheonReviewed in the United States on May 30, 2014
4.0 out of 5 stars
The hero branded a traitor
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A moving tale of Stalin's terror as it affected one family among many. A war hero, trusting in his friendship with Stalin and his hero status is double-crossed by the dictator as happened with so many of Stalin's friends from the revolution and war years. Knowing his demise he maintains the face of strength and security for his family. The story is gripping and will quickly draw you in. The Russian is often muffled in whispered dialog and not easy for beginning Russian speakers to follow but the English subtitles appear to be accurate and do not distract from the film.
2 people found this helpful
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