Bitter Harvest

Critics Consensus

Bitter Harvest lives down to its title with a clichéd wartime romance whose clumsy melodrama dishonors the victims of the real-life horrors it uses as a backdrop.

15%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 60

67%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 1,506
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Movie Info

Based on one of the most overlooked tragedies of the 20th Century, BITTER HARVEST is a powerful story of love, honor, rebellion and survival as seen through the eyes of two young lovers caught in the ravages of Joseph Stalin's genocidal policies against Ukraine in the 1930s. As Stalin advances the ambitions of the burgeoning Soviet Union, a young artist named Yuri (Max Irons) battles to survive famine, imprisonment and torture to save his childhood sweetheart Natalka (Samantha Barks) from the "Holodomor," the death-by-starvation program which ultimately killed millions of Ukrainians. Against this tragic backdrop, Yuri escapes from a Soviet prison and joins the anti-Bolshevik resistance movement as he battles to reunite with Natalka and continue the fight for a free Ukraine. Filmed on location in Ukraine, this epic love story brings to light one of the most devastating chapters of modern Europe. The stellar cast also includes Barry Pepper, Tamer Hassan and Terence Stamp. Director George Mendeluk co-wrote the screenplay with Richard Bachynsky-Hoover based on Bachynsky-Hoover's original story . The film is produced by Ian Ihnatowycz, Stuart Baird, George Mendeluk, Chad Barager and Jaye Gazeley. Dennis Davidson, Peter D. Graves and William J. Immerman serve as executive producers. Richard Bachynsky-Hoover is executive producer (Ukraine). Roadside Attractions will release the film in the U.S. on February 24, 2017.

Cast

Barry Pepper
as Yaroslav
Denis Tarasov
as Young Yuri
Veronika Bratusina
as Young Natalka
Timothy Charles
as Gregory Zinoziev
William Key
as Lev Kamenev
Richard Ashton
as Father Ostapovich
Ostap Stupka
as Ihor Boyko
Rob Mitchell-James
as Nikolao Bukharin
Paul Hickey
as Lazar Kaganovich
Nastya Kotash
as Vlodio's Daughter #2
Arina Kotash
as Vlodio's Daughter #1
Dylan Williams
as Man On Train
Vita Smachelyuk
as Starving Woman at Train Station
Vitaliy Saliy
as Conductor #1
Terry Victor
as Vorshilov
Edward Akrout
as Professor Temchuk
Evgeniy Papernyy
as Conductor #2
Michael Jenn
as Professor Malishnikov
Olena Chernova
as Young Communist
Oles Katsion
as Soviet Officer
Svetlana Orlichenko
as Sergei's Mother
Jack Hollington
as Young Lubko
Rod Hunt
as Anton
Vladimir Gordeev
as Grave Digger #1
Alexandr Tarasevich
as Grave Digger #2
Jane Thorne
as Gaunt Old Woman
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News & Interviews for Bitter Harvest

Critic Reviews for Bitter Harvest

All Critics (60) | Top Critics (20) | Fresh (9) | Rotten (51)

  • Bitter Harvest is both haunting and engrossing. An emotional powerhouse of a film, it is an emotionally resonant, riveting telling of history. Fear and terror is palpable. Pain is resonant.

    October 30, 2019 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • Clearly a deeply felt film whose producers' mission is to cast a spotlight on a hidden Ukrainian tragedy, Bitter Harvest has difficulty living up to the powerful tragic sweep of its subject.

    November 19, 2018 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • At times it felt as if it was trying to emulate David Lean's 1966 masterpiece, Dr Zhivago, although it didn't even come within a whisper of it.

    August 20, 2018 | Full Review…
  • While Mendeluk's film is well intentioned and mildly intriguing, it falls well short of grandness.

    December 19, 2017 | Full Review…
  • Despite the fact that it was a genocide that claimed millions of lives, the Holodomor is not particularly well known. Bitter Harvest is not the film to bring attention to it.

    December 8, 2017 | Full Review…

    Karen Han

    CutPrintFilm
    Top Critic
  • A watchable effort that sheds light on the atrocities that happened under Joseph Stalin's rule.

    September 20, 2017 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Bitter Harvest

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