Stalin's Disciples

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Stalin's Disciples
Stalin's Children Poster.jpg
Film poster
Directed by Nadav Levitan
Produced by Doron Eran
Written by Gadi Danzig
Nadav Levitan
Starring Aharon Almog
Music by Chava Alberstein
Cinematography Gadi Danzig
Edited by Shimon Tamir
Distributed by Tal-Shahar
Release date
  • 1986 (1986)
Running time
95 minutes
Country Israel
Language Hebrew

Stalin's Disciples (Hebrew: ילדי סטאלין‎) is a 1986 Israeli film directed by Nadav Levitan that satirizes the utopian ideology of the Israeli kibbutz.


The death of Joseph Stalin in the 1950s leads to an ideological crisis on a kibbutz that identifies with communist principles. The blind faith of three elderly shoemakers, who previously abused a young boy daring to criticize Stalin, begins to disintegrate when they learn of the Soviet leader's crimes and the manifest antisemitism on display at the Prague Trials.


Critical reception[edit]

The film was screened in the Un Certain Regard section at the 1988 Cannes Film Festival.[1] Although it was both a critical and commercial failure, it was nominated for a Golden Globe Award and was the first Israeli feature to participate in the Moscow and Warsaw Film Festivals.[2]

Yehuda (Judd) Neeman, a film researcher and director, has said that Stalin's Disciples was "the first film to look ironically at Stalinism and the kibbutz movement. . . [Levitan] took characters from the actual fabric of the kibbutz he knew, little by little wove the pieces, and at the end of the film there is the charming moment when one of the heroes looks at the sky, doesn't believe that this era has ended, looks at the moon and instead of seeing the crescent, sees the hammer and sickle. In my eyes, this is a brilliant cinematic touch and also a statement of political film, which was at its peak here in those days."[3]


  1. ^ "Festival de Cannes: Stalin's Disciples". Retrieved 31 July 2009. 
  2. ^ Judd Ne'eman, "Israeli Cinema," in Oliver Leaman, ed., Companion Encyclopedia of Middle Eastern and North African Film (Routledge, 2001), p. 319.
  3. ^ Quoted in Nirit Anderman (January 12, 2010), "Nadav Levitan, 1945-2010", Haaretz (accessed November 10, 2012).

External links[edit]