History Film / EnemyAtTheGates

2nd Mar '16 9:40:27 AM maxravenclaw
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* TruthInTelevision: Around that point in the war, running away from a battle really was punishable by death in the Soviet Union. Stalin had ordered "Not one step backwards", and the commissars followed it.
** While the opening battle scene may seem over the top, much of it is portrayed very realistically. The Germans had very nearly broken through to the Volga River and it was only through sending waves and waves of ill equipped and ill trained soldiers that the Soviets managed to hold out at all.

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* TruthInTelevision: Around that point in the war, running away from a battle really was punishable by death in the Soviet Union. Stalin had ordered "Not one step backwards", and the commissars followed it.
**
While the opening battle scene may seem is over the top, much of it is portrayed very realistically. the Soviets did have to ship men and material over the river while subjected to heavy air and artillery fire. The Germans had very nearly broken through came close to taking the Volga River western bank of the river, and it was only through sending waves and waves of ill equipped and ill trained soldiers that the Soviets managed poured in men and material in the vicious urban combat to hold out at all. keep the Germans in place while they prepared their counter-offensive.
22nd Feb '16 2:13:52 AM fusilcontrafusil
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In the movie, Zaytsev (Law) is a young, slightly naive shepherd from the Urals press-ganged into serving in the Battle of Stalingrad during the German invasion of the South of Soviet Union in 1942. He barely manages to survive a futile charge at the German positions and encounters a political commissar, Danilov (Joseph Fiennes), who witnesses him expertly take out five enemy officers single-handedly with just an abandoned rifle and five bullets. Impressed by the young man's gifted marksmanship, Danilov has him reassigned to the sniper division and uses his propaganda connections to spread the story of his exploits, turning him into a hero and restoring the broken morale of the Soviet defenders. Unfortunately, the friendship between the two becomes strained when both fall in love with Tania (Creator/RachelWeisz), a beautiful young woman who crosses the paths of both, and when the Germans, themselves now increasingly demoralized thanks to the stories of Zaytsev's exploits, introduce the cold, ruthless Major König (Creator/EdHarris) into the battle. Himself a brilliant sniper, König has only one order -- kill Vasily Zaytsev.


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In the movie, Zaytsev (Law) is a young, slightly naive shepherd from the Urals press-ganged into serving in the Battle of Stalingrad during the German invasion of the South of Soviet Union in 1942. He barely manages to survive a futile charge at the German positions and encounters a political commissar, Danilov (Joseph Fiennes), (Creator/JosephFiennes), who witnesses him expertly take out five enemy officers single-handedly with just an abandoned rifle and five bullets. Impressed by the young man's gifted marksmanship, Danilov has him reassigned to the sniper division and uses his propaganda connections to spread the story of his exploits, turning him into a hero and restoring the broken morale of the Soviet defenders. Unfortunately, the friendship between the two becomes strained when both fall in love with Tania (Creator/RachelWeisz), a beautiful young woman who crosses the paths of both, and when the Germans, themselves now increasingly demoralized thanks to the stories of Zaytsev's exploits, introduce the cold, ruthless Major König (Creator/EdHarris) into the battle. Himself a brilliant sniper, König has only one order -- kill Vasily Zaytsev.

17th Feb '16 1:03:06 AM laserviking42
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** It's also debatable as to how great a sniper the real Zaystev actually was. As shown in the movie, the Soviet propaganda machine worked overtime to build him up to a god like status.


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** The real Battle of Stalingrad was far worse than portrayed, especially as Stalin refused to evacuate the civilian population believing that they would strengthen the fighting spirit of the troops.
17th Feb '16 12:56:24 AM laserviking42
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Added DiffLines:

** While the opening battle scene may seem over the top, much of it is portrayed very realistically. The Germans had very nearly broken through to the Volga River and it was only through sending waves and waves of ill equipped and ill trained soldiers that the Soviets managed to hold out at all.
17th Feb '16 12:49:07 AM laserviking42
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* ThePoliticalOfficer: Several political officers are seen [[WeHaveReserves shooting anyone attempting to retreat]]. The deuteragonist Danilov was a reasonably nice person, though.

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* ThePoliticalOfficer: Several political officers are seen [[WeHaveReserves shooting anyone attempting to retreat]]. [[note]] This is actually TruthInTelevision as Stalin made it very clear that no retreat of any kind was allowed and specifically ordered the NKVD (predecessor or the KGB) to shoot anyone who retreated.[[/note]] The deuteragonist Danilov was a reasonably nice person, though.
4th Jan '16 1:30:02 PM JamesAustin
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''Enemy at the Gates'' (also known as ''Stalingrad: Enemy at the Gates'') is a 2001 war movie directed by Jean-Jacques Annaud and starring Jude Law as a Russian sniper in the [[UsefulNotes/RedsWithRockets Soviet Red Army]] in the UsefulNotes/GreatPatrioticWar, during the battle of Stalingrad. At the time it came out it was the most expensive film ever produced by an European studio. It's VeryLooselyBasedOnATrueStory, that of the real-life sniper [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vasily_Zaytsev Vasily Zaytsev]], with the basic plot based off a subplot in the non-fiction book ''Enemy at the Gates: The Battle for Stalingrad''.

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''Enemy at the Gates'' (also known as ''Stalingrad: Enemy at the Gates'') is a 2001 war movie directed by Jean-Jacques Annaud and starring Jude Law as a Russian sniper in the [[UsefulNotes/RedsWithRockets Soviet Red Army]] in the UsefulNotes/GreatPatrioticWar, [[UsefulNotes/WorldWarII Great Patriotic War]], during the battle of Stalingrad. At the time it came out it was the most expensive film ever produced by an European studio. It's VeryLooselyBasedOnATrueStory, that of the real-life sniper [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vasily_Zaytsev Vasily Zaytsev]], with the basic plot based off a subplot in the non-fiction book ''Enemy at the Gates: The Battle for Stalingrad''.
15th Dec '15 9:43:48 PM ColeNichols
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* OnlyAFleshWound: Zaitsev shoots König at the base of the index finger of his left hand with a 7.62mm rifle from less than 100 meters. We see a little splotch of blood, and König spends the rest of the movie with his hand wrapped in gauze. In reality, a shot from a rifle of that caliber at a range that close would have taken his index finger off, and very likely the middle finger with it.
26th Nov '15 12:17:11 AM Gecko3
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** Also played straight in one early scene where poorly equipped Soviet soldiers are ordered to rush towards a German line. Their assault fails, and the ones who attempt to retreat back are then cut down by their own forces due to Stalin's infamous "Not one step back!" [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Order_No._227 Order 227.]]
7th Nov '15 5:28:38 AM Fireblood
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* BetterToDieThanBeKilled: The "Disgraced Officer" version was done in this film. Khruschev is brought into Stalingrad to replace the General who had commanded Soviet forces in their initial disastrous counter-attack against the Germans. Khruschev hands him a pistol and says, "Perhaps you would prefer to spare me the paperwork." He leaves the office, we hear a gunshot, and then Khruschev introduces himself as the new commander.

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* BetterToDieThanBeKilled: The "Disgraced Officer" version was done in this film. Khruschev is brought into Stalingrad to replace the General who had commanded Soviet forces in their initial disastrous counter-attack against the Germans. Khruschev hands him a pistol and says, "Perhaps you would prefer to spare me asks "Shall we cut through the paperwork." red tape?" He leaves the office, we hear a gunshot, and then Khruschev introduces himself as the new commander.



* ChummyCommies: The Soviet Russians are [[VillainProtagonist Villain Protagonists]] of a sort, and it's sorta okay to cheer for them because they're battling the just as despicable Nazi Germany, who are invading their homeland. The film even [[ButNotTooForeign demystifies Russians for Western audiences by having British actors portray them]].
* ColdSniper: Averted. Vasily is most certainly not cold and unemotional. Played straight with Major König.
* {{Commissar}}: Danilov. Subverted, he is a fairly nice person - although his power does corrupt him enough to tempt him to use it to MurderTheHypotenuse because of jealousy in a LoveTriangle.

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* ChummyCommies: The Soviet Russians are [[VillainProtagonist Villain Protagonists]] of a sort, and it's sorta okay to cheer for them because they're battling the just as despicable Nazi Germany, who are invading their homeland. The film even [[ButNotTooForeign demystifies Russians for Western audiences by having British actors portray them]].
them]]. However, it still points out the problems with the Soviet Union.
* ColdSniper: Averted.{{Averted}}. Vasily is most certainly not cold and unemotional. Played straight {{Played straight}} with Major König.
* {{Commissar}}: Danilov. Subverted, {{Subverted}}, since he is a fairly nice person - although his power does corrupt him enough to tempt him to use it to MurderTheHypotenuse because of jealousy in a LoveTriangle.



* EvilVersusEvil -- Hitler had the Gestapo, the camps and starting the war via the conquest of Poland. Stalin had the NKVD, the gulags and starting the war via the conquest of Poland. The filmmakers certainly didn't help by deliberately showing the Soviets to be only slightly better than the Germans.

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* EvilVersusEvil -- EvilVersusEvil: Hitler had the Gestapo, the camps and starting the war via the conquest of Poland. Stalin had the NKVD, the gulags and starting the war via the conquest of Poland. The filmmakers certainly didn't help by deliberately showing the Soviets to be only slightly better than the Germans.



* GreyAndGrayMorality: The factions are pretty brutal, but the morality of the main characters edges more towards this. They're mostly just duty-bound soldiers trying to survive a war or to avenge/protect loved ones, even when they do bad things. Also, neither Vasily or König ever demonstrate any real conviction in respectively Stalinist or Nazist ideology.
* HeroicSacrifice: In the middle of a sniper stalemate in between main protagonist Vasily and the German ColdSniper, Vasily's friend-slash-sentimental-rival, quite jealous that the LoveInterest (now presumed dead) has chosen Vasily over him and disillusioned with the communist cause, [[spoiler:exposes himself to the enemy's field of fire as a final act of friendship and gets a bullet in the head as a result; this allows Vasily to pinpoint the bad guy's position and kill him]].

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* GreyAndGrayMorality: The factions are pretty brutal, but the morality of the main characters edges more towards this. They're mostly just duty-bound soldiers trying to survive a war or to avenge/protect loved ones, even when they do bad things. Also, neither Vasily or König ever demonstrate any real conviction in respectively Stalinist or Nazist Nazi ideology.
* HeroicSacrifice: HeroicSuicide: In the middle of a sniper stalemate in between main protagonist Vasily and the German ColdSniper, Vasily's friend-slash-sentimental-rival, quite jealous that the LoveInterest (now presumed dead) has chosen Vasily over him and disillusioned with the communist cause, [[spoiler:exposes himself to the enemy's field of fire as a final act of friendship and gets a bullet in the head as a result; this allows Vasily to pinpoint the bad guy's position and kill him]].



* HistoricalHeroUpgrade: Zaytsev is protrayed as the epitome of the freedom fighter, a peasant pressed into the military at its darkest hour. In RealLife, he had been an experienced hunter, had some education and had previously been and a technical clerk in the Soviet Navy in the Pacific Fleet. Though he was eventually transferred to the army as a senior warrant officer in 1942.

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* HistoricalHeroUpgrade: Zaytsev is protrayed portrayed as the epitome of the freedom fighter, a peasant pressed into the military at its darkest hour. In RealLife, he had been an experienced hunter, had some education and had previously been and a technical clerk in the Soviet Navy in the Pacific Fleet. Though Fleet, though he was eventually transferred to the army as a senior warrant officer in 1942.



* IdealizedSex: There's a realistically awkward sex scene between the main protagonist and the love interest. It's awkward because they do it in the subways below Stalingrad, surrounded by sleeping people because it's being used as a bomb shelter, and so they have to try to not wake anybody up and don't have much room for themselves. So they just kinda roll over each other, try to take off each others' clothing and try to get his penis into her without waking up a guy sleeping a foot away.

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* IdealizedSex: Averted. There's a realistically awkward sex scene between the main protagonist and the love interest. It's awkward because they do it in the subways below Stalingrad, surrounded by sleeping people because it's being used as a bomb shelter, and so they have to try to not wake anybody up and don't have much room for themselves. So they just kinda roll over each other, try to take off each others' clothing and try to get his penis into her without waking up a guy sleeping a foot away.



* MoeGreeneSpecial: [[spoiler:Vasily finally kills König by shooting him straight through his right eye.]]

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* MoeGreeneSpecial: [[spoiler:Vasily [[spoiler: Vasily finally kills König by shooting him straight through his right eye.]]



* OhCrap: The last two Germans Vasily kills certainly get one when they realize that in the span of less then thirty seconds, three of their comrades were killed, and they had little idea where the shots came from. The final one definitely qualifies when he realized his weapon was not within arms reach. (Something that EVERY army from UsefulNotes/WW1 on drills into its soldiers from the moment they start training. NEVER leave your weapon where you can not quickly grab it, and use it.)

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* OhCrap: The last two Germans Vasily kills certainly get one when they realize that in the span of less then thirty seconds, three of their comrades were killed, and they had little idea where the shots came from. The final one definitely qualifies when he realized his weapon was not within arms reach. (Something reach (something that EVERY army from UsefulNotes/WW1 on drills into its soldiers from the moment they start training. NEVER training-NEVER leave your weapon where you can not quickly grab it, and use it.)it).



* [[WorkingClassHero Proletariat Hero]]: Played straight with Vasily and invoked by Danilov and the Soviet propaganda machine. Vasily honestly wants nothing more than to work in a factory, being a foreman.

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* [[WorkingClassHero Proletariat Proletarian Hero]]: Played straight with Vasily and invoked by Danilov and the Soviet propaganda machine. Vasily honestly wants nothing more than to work in a factory, being a foreman.



* RightThroughHisPants: There's an extremely awkward sex scene where the only flesh shown is a brief shot of the woman's butt as she pulls her pants down. All other clothing stays on. This one is a {{justified|Trope}}, since they were in the midst of an army camp in Russia and were trying not to attract any attention, and it was ''cold''.

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* RightThroughHisPants: There's an extremely awkward sex scene where the only flesh shown is a brief shot of the woman's butt as she pulls her pants down. All other clothing stays on. This one is a {{justified|Trope}}, justified, since they were in the midst of an army camp in Russia and were trying not to attract any attention, and it was ''cold''.



* YouHaveFailedMe: Khrushchev: "I have to report you to the boss. Perhaps you prefer to avoid the red tape." In this case, this done [[GoodIsNotNice by the good guys]], as DeliberateValuesDissonance.

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* YouHaveFailedMe: Khrushchev: "I have to report you to the boss. Perhaps you prefer to avoid Shall we cut out the red tape." tape?" In this case, this done [[GoodIsNotNice by the good guys]], as DeliberateValuesDissonance.
6th Nov '15 3:04:11 PM MagBas
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* AdaptationalAttractiveness

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* %%* AdaptationalAttractiveness



* AffablyEvil: Major Erwin König, especially when dealing with Sacha.

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* %%* AffablyEvil: Major Erwin König, especially when dealing with Sacha.



* BattleCouple: Two of the snipers working with Zaytsev early in the film. [[WarIsHell They both die soon after being introduced.]]

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* %%* BattleCouple: Two of the snipers working with Zaytsev early in the film. [[WarIsHell They both die soon after being introduced.]]



* BoomHeadshot: Many examples, as this is the most fool-proof way for snipers to take out enemy infantry.

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* %%* BoomHeadshot: Many examples, as this is the most fool-proof way for snipers to take out enemy infantry.



* CannedOrdersOverLoudspeaker: Used during the battle of Stalingrad by the Red Army as a means to bolster morale.

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* %%* CannedOrdersOverLoudspeaker: Used during the battle of Stalingrad by the Red Army as a means to bolster morale.



* DarkerAndEdgier: Compared to most American war movies, especially UsefulNotes/WorldWarII ones. On the other hand, many Russians found it entirely too light-hearted for a movie set in the darkest hours of the UsefulNotes/GreatPatrioticWar.

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* %%* DarkerAndEdgier: Compared to most American war movies, especially UsefulNotes/WorldWarII ones. On the other hand, many Russians found it entirely too light-hearted for a movie set in the darkest hours of the UsefulNotes/GreatPatrioticWar.



* FriendlySniper: Jude Law's portrayal of Soviet sniper Vasily Zaitsev.
* GoodIsNotNice

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* %%* FriendlySniper: Jude Law's portrayal of Soviet sniper Vasily Zaitsev.
* %%* GoodIsNotNice



* UsefulNotes/NazisWithGnarlyWeapons: If you pay attention (or listen to the commentary track) you will observe that whenever the camera is looking down a rifle scope, this trope is illustrated; Russian scopes are shown to have a significantly smaller field of view than German ones.



* UsefulNotes/RedsWithRockets: This film has one of the few heroic portrayals of the Red Army in Western media and the filmmakers did their best to minimize this.



* ScrewTheWarWerePartying: The Russian soldiers party because they're happy they're alive for another day and may be dead tomorrow. Veterans of the actual battle criticized this scene, saying that they instead spent their downtime sleeping or eating.
* SniperDuel: What the plot and center of the action is.

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* ScrewTheWarWerePartying: The Russian soldiers party because they're happy they're alive for another day and may be dead tomorrow. Veterans of the actual battle criticized this scene, saying that they instead spent their downtime sleeping or eating.
*
tomorrow.
%%*
SniperDuel: What the plot and center of the action is.



* ThoseWackyNazis

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* %%* ThoseWackyNazis



* UsefulNotes/WorldWarII
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