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

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

A Small War in Moscow

Trailer for "Newsmakers"/"Polisstyrka X7".

"Newsmakers", a Russian-Swedish remake of the Hong Kong action film "Breaking News", has been released in Sweden as "Polisstyrka X7". Although the basic subject is crime the film is also about information warfare and therefore deserves some extra attention, like on this blog.

Also, the guys fighting the villians are not only the Russian militia (nowadays the Russian police) but also OMON (black berets) and other paramilitary units.

It is weird that a partly Swedish film that was shown in Russia in 2009 only should reach the Swedish audience two years later, directly to DVD. Still, the basic idea about the media version of a conflict being (considered) more important than the events themselves is probably more 2011 than 2009. The media-focused Oslo mass-murderer Anders Behring Breivik has made the idea painfully relevant.

It would be a strong understatement to call this remake action packed. The problem with the film is that it has so much action - performed and filmed way better than in most Swedish films - that the highly interesting plot and three great main characters simply drown in all the bloody action. The high quality of the many (too many) action scenes I reckon is mostly due to its director, Anders Banke. Yep, the director of the SS Vampire movie "Frostbite".

Thus I am not able to generally recommend this movie, called "Newsmakers" in all western countries except Sweden (here it is "Polisstyrka X7"). But if you are a (former) Muscovite or have a strong interest in action movies or information warfare... well, then you might still want to see this movie. Another reason could be to simply watch the actor Andrey Merzlikin. IMHO he does not have to say a word to be brilliant. Yes, he is that soldier in "The Brest Fortress".

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