Today, on Mayday, we had the inaugural Stalin Prize film night. More than I expected gathered to watch the epic Fall of Berlin (winner in 1950). We drank vodka, soaking it up with various nibblies. Some extraordinary scenes, such as the one when a mad and rat-like Hitler meets prelates from the Vatican and promises them that he will save ‘Western civilisation’, or the Stakhanovite themes at the beginning, replete with the rich harvests and steel plants that smiling children simply visit on a whim, or indeed the calm, measured, albeit somewhat stiff Stalin himself, who calmly directs the Red Army with insight and brilliance. Not a few laughs, but most stayed rivetted to the end. After all, it is really is a love story between Alexei and Natasha.


More film nights to come, with other winners of the Stalin Prize.


Alongside reading a 2000 page novel, you can now see the film:

Journey to the West: The Conquest of the Demons (2013): In this exciting adventure comedy viewers will see a very strange monk, Xuanzang (with an unusual name). It follows a journey along the Silk Road to India, in order to find the Buddhist scriptures. He travels not alone, and is in fact is not the main character. This monk, fortunately or unfortunately, has a passive and wimpish role. The film is more about a secondary monk, who is the Monkey King, Sun Wukong. Other strange creatures accompany the monk. Even more, the monk is the companion of another monk and a white horse-dragon. Do not miss this exciting movie and its adventure heroes. Director: Stephen Chow. Cast: Huang Bo, Zhang Wen, Shu Qi, Shou Luo, Chrissie Chau, Chi Chi Ling Ming Hung Fung, Yu Hin. Country:China. Duration: 109 min.


Trust Hollywood in its chronic unoriginality to borrow yet another idea. The nauseous ‘Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter‘ relies upon the much better ‘Stalin: Bankers’ Hunter’.

Stalin - Bankers Hunter a

(ht sk)

When I have no option but to get on a plane, I prefer to travel with Air China, doing my bit for the cause. But one of the few pleasures is to wake up from a groggy, drug-induced sleep, and find a decent film to see me over the final dopey hours. What exactly is a decent film? One that would be worthy of the Stalin Prize, of course. And only on Air China can you find such a film. Celebrating 90 years since the foundation of the Chinese Communist Party is The Beginning of the Great Revival. It has Mao and Lenin and Zhou Enlai and Li Dazhao, the man who studied and introduced Marxism to China in the 1910s and whose statue I have seen on the campus of Peking University (see below). Needless to say, I loved every minute of it, so it becomes a nomination for the revived Stalin Prize.

And Li Dazhao

For those interested that great film, Padenie Berlina (The Fall of Berlin), parts one and two are now available for download. And you don’t even need to agree to download the (possibly dodgy) software the site suggests. The film is unique, not only as the first film about the Second World War, but also because Stalin himself chose the actors, had a large hand in the script, and appeared in it himself.

To complete the circle, it also won the Stalin Prize, first degree. The world is a poorer place without the Stalin prize, so I suggest it be restored.

Australia, an epic of moronic proportions with a budget the size of Suva, stopped the rush of tourists to Australia in their tracks, undid the good work of Crocodile Dundee and left only boat people wanting to come here who hadn’t seen the movie.

(Charles Waterstreet)