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Author, film researcher and member of the Swedish Military History Commission.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Stalingrad in Lapland

I am no big fan of the German 1993 movie "Stalingrad" . Many aspects of it are impressive but I still lost interest. E.g. the tank scenes seem unrealistic to me - being a tanker I think I have some idea about tank realism. But what I recently learnt made me want to give it a second try.

I recently learnt from a Finnish WWII buff from Lapland that the film´s battle in the snow with Soviet T-34 tanks was filmed around Kemijärvi NE of Rovaniemi in Finnish Lapland. The T-34s are coming from the island of Pieskansaari, that briefly can be seen. Yes, this means that a frozen lake is part of what you see. You get a glimpse of this scene at the end of this trailer:

"Stalingrad" (1993) trailer.

I understand some more scenes were shot in Lapland, in Ketola, some klicks west of Kemijärvi. I believe these are the snow storm scenes in an "Arctic wasteland". The place is a huge industrial area with sand, sand, sand. A man-made desert in Lapland. Am I right about this?

Now, all you Norwegian readers, am I correct in remembering that some scenes, with large bunkers, were shot in Arctic Norway, or was that for the movie "Winter War"?

1 comment:

  1. You are on very right way. I was on the place when tanks came etc. It was filmed two kilometres north from Kemijärvi Centre on Kemijoki-area. The very ending scene with dying actors was filmed in very same place. Our Kemijoki-river is in wintertime as a great snowy desert here. Near Ketola airfield, on sandy area, were another filmings, death of Gege and Captain Haller. I´m living here and know these areas well.
    So this just from Kemijärvi.