‘A Comedy Of Terrors’ goes the tagline for this movie and never more true is that statement. Do you you like your comedy dark? Well this is, about as dark as a starless Siberian night.
This movie is based around a French graphic novel and directed by Armando Iannucci.
Moscow 1953, was not a happy place – Stalin had an iron grip on power and that is an understatement. It was a case if he said jump, you would say how high – this can be seen very clearly in one of the opening scenes. Stalin wanted a recording of a classical concert that was taking place live in the city. The question goes round the concert venue’ Did we record it? No, well don’t let anyone leave, close the doors, we go again’ – told you this comedy was dark!!
Stalin receives the recording and a note drops out, he reads it and then promptly dies. Panic now ensues, what do we do now and how do we replace him? This is at the heart of the comedy story line in this film. If it wasn’t so serious it would be funny, turns out despite yourself you will probably find yourself laughing even though you know you shouldn’t.
The stellar cast don’t even attempt a Russian accent, in fact Stalin speaks with a north of England accent and equally the American actors don’t change theirs. In a lesser movie that might grate with you, but actually this is quickly forgotten in the absurdity of it all.
While this is a historical comedy, it is more a case of making the history fit the comedy rather sticking strictly to the facts, but a bit like the accents issue I mentioned in the previous paragraph you forget that pretty quickly, if you like your comedy dark then this is the one for you, if not I hear that ‘My Little Pony’ is also out in cinemas this week!!