Kutuzov is a biopic about Prince Kutuzov, the Russian Field marshal who defeated Napoleon Bonaparte’s Grande Armée in a brutal war of attrition. Shot in 1943 and released to Soviet audiences in March 1944, the film served to rouse up the Soviet people in their push back against invading Nazi Germany.
The War of 1812 and WWII held much in common for the Russian and Soviet people. In fact, in Russian they are called the Patriotic War and Great Patriotic War respectively. Both Kutuzov and Stalin pursued a scorched earth policy, designed to make their invading foe’s supply lines as difficult to support as possible. In Kutuzov, the eponymous Field marshal is depicted as a master strategist, capable of completely understanding the enemy, and trusted implicitly by his men. When Soviet citizens watched the movie, there was a clear message – that they should trust the competence of their leaders completely to end the war for good.