Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw is a 2019 American action film directed by David Leitch starring Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham. It is a spin-off of the Fast & Furious film series and the ninth installment overall. The plot follows the unlikely pairing of the titular characters as they are forced to join with Shaw’s sister (Vanessa Kirby) to battle a cybernetically-enhanced terrorist (Idris Elba) and his organization threaten the world with a deadly virus. (wiki)
Chernobyl is a historical drama television miniseries created and written by Craig Mazin and directed by Johan Renck (Stakka Bo). The series a co-production of HBO and Sky UK depicting the Chernobyl nuclear disaster of April 1986 and the unprecedented cleanup efforts that followed. It features an ensemble cast led by Jared Harris, Stellan Skarsgård, Emily Watson, and Paul Ritter. The miniseries is based in large part on the recollections of Pripyat locals, as told by Belarusian Nobel laureate Svetlana Alexievich in her book Voices from Chernobyl. (wiki)
spacetime coordinates: modern-day Moscow / Budapest
Red Sparrow is a 2018 American spy thriller film directed by Francis Lawrence and written by Justin Haythe, based on the 2013 novel of the same name by Jason Matthews. The film stars Jennifer Lawrence, Joel Edgerton, Matthias Schoenaerts, Charlotte Rampling, Mary-Louise Parker, and Jeremy Irons. It tells the story of a Russian intelligence officer who is sent to make contact with a CIA agent in the hope of discovering the identity of a mole. Matthews, a former member of the CIA, advised the production on the depiction of spying. Based on historic Soviet “sexpionage” and contemporary Russian use of kompromat.
spacetime coordinates: 1953 Moscow
The Death of Stalin is a 2017 political satire film directed and co-written by Armando Iannucci. Based on the French graphic novel La mort de Staline, it depicts the Soviet power struggles following the death of dictator Joseph Stalin in 1953.
A number of academics commented on the historical accuracy of The Death of Stalin. Historian Richard Overy noted in The Guardian that the film “is littered with historical errors”, which can be “viewed as cinematic licence“, but was most critical that the film did not appropriately honour Stalin’s victims. Director Iannucci stated that he “chose to tone down real-life absurdity” to make the work more believable. Samuel Goff, at the Department of Slavonic Studies, University of Cambridge, cited several justifiable historical inaccuracies with the ranks and roles of Stalin’s inner circle, but thought the film missed the overall point and was unable to locate any of the inherent humour contained in Stalinism.