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The Singing Revolution (2007)


Average Rating: 7/10
Reviews Counted: 37
Fresh: 31
Rotten: 6

Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.

Average Rating: 7.1/10
Reviews Counted: 18
Fresh: 15
Rotten: 3

Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.


Average Rating: 2.7/5
User Ratings: 50,601


Movie Info

After enduring WWII-era brutalization by Hitler's Nazi Party and decades of repressive Soviet dictatorship, the tiny Eastern European nation of Estonia began to declare its independence from Communist rule in the late '80s. Over a five-year period, beginning in 1986, hundreds of thousands of Estonians began to systematically and repeatedly gather in public venues to collectively sing illegal patriotic songs, declaring their desire for national independence but never resorting to violence amid … More

Documentary , Special Interest
Directed By:
Written By:
Maureen Castle Tusty , James Tusty , Mike Majoros
In Theaters:
Feb 3, 2009
Mountain View Productions - Official Site

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Critic Reviews for The Singing Revolution

All Critics (38) | Top Critics (19) | Fresh (31) | Rotten (6) | DVD (1)

'Nonstop Estonian folk music' might not be a great format for a radio station, but it sure works for The Singing Revolution.

Full Review… | July 11, 2008
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic

This fine and surprising documentary asks an even more challenging question: Can music promote nonviolence, prevent bloodshed and successfully overthrow an oppressive regime? Again -- astonishingly -- the answer is 'yes.'

Full Review… | June 20, 2008
Houston Chronicle
Top Critic

The thrill of this documentary is in the remarkable story of the Little Country That Could.

Full Review… | May 30, 2008
Top Critic

As far as the plot goes, widespread lack of familiarity with Estonia's recent history actually works in the film's favor: Suspense born of ignorance lends the unfolding drama the urgency of a political thriller.

Full Review… | May 22, 2008
Chicago Tribune
Top Critic

Patience may not the most exciting movie subject, but The Singing Revolution is, in its deceptively mild way, inspiring.

Full Review… | April 25, 2008
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

It's a powerful story of a nation that, almost literally, sang its way to freedom.

Full Review… | April 17, 2008
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

One of the most inspirational and powerful documentaries I've ever seen.

Full Review… | March 28, 2009
ReelTalk Movie Reviews

a film that joyfully celebrates the power of the human spirit in all its glory.

Full Review… | January 23, 2009

Fortunately, the interview subjects (who include festival performers and current and former Estonian leaders) are very intelligent and well-spoken. Their stories are what really holds out interest here.

Full Review… | August 8, 2008
Deseret News, Salt Lake City

If The Singing Revolution were a fictional film it would be dismissed as a pie-in-the-sky fantasy. But it's all true.

August 1, 2008
Kansas City Star

Folk songs can be plenty inspirational, but like this movie, they just aren't all that exciting.

Full Review… | July 17, 2008
Las Vegas Weekly

Although filmmakers James and Maureen Castle Tusty haven't figured out how to make historic tidbits come alive, they do know how to make them sing.

Full Review… | July 11, 2008
St. Paul Pioneer Press

Effectively chronicles in a thumbnail sketch the blustery recent political 20th-century history of Estonia.

Full Review… | July 7, 2008
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Full of the kind of collective passion and struggle and yearning for freedom that makes viewers well up with pride at their shared humanity.

Full Review… | July 3, 2008
Austin Chronicle

Booster-ish, with only former participants in the struggle and activists interviewed. There's a you-must-feel-good thrust (and an incessant score). Warbles a familiar tune to Estonians, presumably, and doesn't offer enough rich notes for an outsider.

Full Review… | July 1, 2008
Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)

The Singing Revolution is the sort of film that should be shown to North American school children or anyone else who takes his freedom for granted.

Full Review… | April 25, 2008
Jam! Movies

An intriguing, highly recommended film.

Full Review… | April 24, 2008
Entertainment Insiders

The Singing Revolution becomes a tense political thriller that culminates in one of the most significant events of past century: The collapse of the Soviet Union.

Full Review… | April 3, 2008
Seattle Post-Intelligencer

Though slightly overstated, the part played by singing was no doubt significant. Its implied role in keeping the Estonian revolution nonviolent is especially stirring.

Full Review… | April 3, 2008
Boxoffice Magazine

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