International Documentary Films
Sweden/Ukraine/Norway, 2023, 92 min
Alexander Mihalkovich and Hanna Badzia
Language and Subtitles:
Russian and Belarusian, Subtitles in English and Hebrew
Cph:Dox, One World International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival, Seattle International FF, Wiesbaden goEast, Krakow FF, DocsBarcelona, Odessa International Film Festival, Reykjavik International FF
Dox:Awards, Krakow FF, Audience Award; Wiesbaden goEast, FIPRESCI Prize
In an autocratic and violent society, hazing in the Belarus military is a common means of oppression and humiliation. When Svetlana’s son dies, his commanders claim he committed suicide. She refuses to believe them and launches an inquiry of her own. While Svetlana seeks justice in a corrupt legal system, young dissident Nikita is drafted. As a soldier, he finds himself participating in suppressing the protests that sweep the country after President Lukashenko is “elected” once again. With spellbinding and gut-wrenching camera work, the film conveys the atmosphere of terror that reigns in Belarus after thirty years of ongoing tyranny.