What We Are Watching Today: The Death of Stalin 

Updated 03 May 2018

What We Are Watching Today: The Death of Stalin 

  • Armando Iannucci's film extracts a wickedly dark humor from one of the darkest periods of the 20th century
  • “The Death of Stalin” is not easy to watch, but the star cast are scarily convincing as the mad power struggle at the top of one of history’s most destructive regimes unfolds

What happens in a brutal totalitarian dictatorship when the person who was at the pinnacle of power is suddenly no more? That’s the question tackled by this 2017 Armando Iannucci film that extracts a wickedly dark humor from one of the darkest periods of the 20th century.

“The Death of Stalin” continues the director’s trademark acerbic wit and foul-mouthed, quick-fire dialogue, which was made famous in the British TV comedy satirizing modern government, “The Thick of It.”

The drama charts the scrabbling for survival of the Soviet Union’s most powerful figures, who had survived the dictator’s purges of Communist Party members. They desperately jostle for position while still professing loyalty to their dead leader, setting up farcical set pieces, including an excruciating autopsy scene. 

All the while, preparations for Stalin’s funeral are under way as the leadership must not flinch in demonstrating reverence for their fallen leader to the masses. 

“The Death of Stalin” is not easy to watch, but the star cast, including Michael Palin as Molotov and Steve Buscemi as Khrushchev, are scarily convincing as the mad power struggle at the top of one of history’s most destructive regimes unfolds.

The film also offers a salutary lesson on the checks and balances of power at a time when authoritarianism is again on the rise.


DJ Khaled reveals Arabic name of second child during Grammys acceptance speech

DJ Khaled revealed the name of his second child at the 2020 Grammys. (File/AFP)
Updated 27 January 2020

DJ Khaled reveals Arabic name of second child during Grammys acceptance speech

DUBAI: US-Palestinian producer DJ Khaled has announced the name of his second child, a boy, at the 2020 Grammy Awards on Sunday.

Taking to the stage at Los Angeles’ Staples Center to accept his first-ever Grammy, for Best Rap/Sung Performance, the artist revealed that he and his wife Nicole Tuck have decided to name their newborn Alam.

“First of all, God is the greatest, thank you God,” began the 44-year-old, who accepted the accolade for “Higher” alongside John Legend. “This is for Nipsey Hussle. This is for hip hop,” he added, shouting out the late Los Angeles rapper who was also featured on the track.

“I want to thank my beautiful queen Nicole. I just had a new baby boy a week ago,” he continued, going on to share his second child’s name and explaining, “It means ‘the world’ in Arabic.”

“And I also want to big up my other son, Asahd,” Khaled added of his first child, who recently turned three-years-old. “I love you so much. Daddy will be home soon.”

The Miami-based producer took to Instagram last week to announce the happy news that he is the proud father of a new baby boy.  

Posting a picture of himself with the family’s doctor, Dr Jin, after the birth, the “Wild Thoughts” hitmaker said: ‘THANK YOU ALLAH! THANK YOU MY QUEEN NICOLE! BLESS UP DR JIN ! ANOTHER ONE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (sic).”

The chart-topping producer announced that he was going to become a father for the second time in 2019 with a picture of Tuck having an ultrasound scan.