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On the cover
7 (2014)
Tunnelling Towards Hope

28 February - 6 March 2014

Ukraine History

A Stronghold of Rulers and Rebels

With the recent death toll jumping to nearly 100 and 1,000 injured, Hrushevskoho Street, one of the strongholds of EuroMaidans three-month-long protests, made headlines around the globe. It was here, on 19 January the countrys stand against government corruption, abuse of power, and the violation of human rights turned from peaceful protest to all-out revolution. Having witnessed much over the years, Hrushevskoho is a street with a history, and not only care of recent days.


Ukraine Today
Acelebrity using their status and intelligence to influence public views and opinion is rarely seen in modern society, even less so in Ukraine. Here, the majority of celebs use their time, effort, and money to enhance or further their career rather than put their name to something that can do good for others. However, as EuroMaidan intensifies, some are making themselves heard and they fall either side of the EuroMaidan divide.
It used to be that when rebellion and revolution occurred, the intellectual, creative, and spiritual elite would be front and centre.


Ukrainian Culture

When Walls Can Talk

People have been writing on walls since the dawn of civilisation, we call it graffiti, and ranges from simple written words to elaborate wall paintings. Sometimes it is merely the creator wanting to leave his or her mark; sometimes there is an underlying social or political reason. And it is due to the latter that graffiti has exploded across Kyiv in recent months. Anti dictator messages aside, we peel back a few layers of paint to look at graffiti in the city in general.


Kyiv Kino

Get Younger Go to Molodist

Its a cinema event that takes place at about this time every year, gathering hundreds of films from across the world. Promoting young, professional cinema, the best in student, short film and feature films are at Ukraines doorstep starting this week.

Molodist turns 42 this year, and brings with it loads of fascinating flicks to the celebration. Two programmes competition and non-competition umbrella a number of categories from geographically-based to sexually-spun and everything in between. If youve never taken in this can-be provocative festival of cinematic experimentation, what are you waiting for? Get going to Molodist.
One of the films being presented at this years festival is Vic & Flo Saw a Bear, which tells the story of two lesbian lovers and former convicts who settle in the countryside of Quebec, Canada. Written and directed by Canadian filmmaker/producer Denis Cote, he brings the film to Kyiv personally, after it won the Alfred Bauer Prize at the 63rd Berlin International Film Festival in February of this year. Incidentally, it is also a part of Molodists must-sees.

Tell us about Vic and Flo Saw a Bear. As a film that features lesbian lovers, how do you think it will be received in this part of the world an area so close to Russia, where homosexuality is very negatively perceived?
The whole world is extremely sad and angry about all the homophobia in that region of the world. It makes humanity return so far behind! That said, Im not sure homosexuality is a strong issue in the film. Most women in jail create couples; security couples, not homosexual ones. When they are released, they like to stay around women or not. It is not about being homosexual, its about security. We dont talk much about that in the film and I am not trying to push the issue. People love each other, its perfectly natural, end of question.

Much of your work is of the indie genre do you think Hollywoods day in the sun has come and gone? Do you feel you have more control if the film is independently produced?
I have made so many indie and personal films that I dont think Hollywood would ever be interested in me. I like to find new opportunities in Europe and the most important thing is to control my signature and impose my personality. I dont dream of any other career now. Im myself.

Have you always wanted to direct? Was there ever a time when you wanted to be in front of the camera?
When I became a film student at 18-years-old, it was clear it was to become a director. Nothing else.

You grew up in Quebec, a very independent part of Canada, how has that shaped your worldview?
I guess its safe to say we are different from English Canadians. Our inspirations come from different cultures. Art-wise, we are much more European-influenced than our neighbours, who see more opportunities in the United States. We are a very small French nation surrounded by 400 million Anglophones. Of course, our political, cultural and social reflexes are about survival. Sometimes, we are a bit closed on ourselves but in general I think we are quite a special and original society.

Though highly accomplished, what are some things, if any, you have yet to achieve in life?
Visit Japan. Make a whole film in another country. Eat better. Tattoo my hands. Call my mother more often.

You will be offering a master class while in Kyiv. What is the most important piece of advice you might pass on to young aspiring artists in the industry here in Ukraine?
Students seem to forget cinema is a very social art. The basic thing is to meet people, wherever: at the local cinematheque or in a cheap bar drinking vodka but meet people! Communication is key. Some people have no leadership, no strong personality, they are afraid to meet people. They dont usually end up making cinema. Its important to say that, and to say that cinephilia will never be out of fashion. Its the best school.

by Lana Nicole

Kyiv International Film Fest
19 27 October
Various cinemas

Must-see Films of Molodist
The Broken Circle Breakdown
Directed by Felix Van Groeningen (BE/NL, 2012, 100)
Elise and Didier have been together for seven years. When their daughter gets seriously ill, all the turning points in their intense relationship seem to flash by: courtship and passion, coming closer through their bluegrass music group, marriage, unexpected pregnancy, parenthood...

Beauty and the Beast/La Belle et la Bête
Directed by Jean Cocteau (FR, 1946, 90)
Jean Cocteaus retelling of Madame Leprince de Beaumonts classic fairytale of Beauty, who saves her fathers life by promising to live in the enchanted castle of a fearful beast, is perhaps one of the best known French films of all times.

The Notebook/Le Grand Cahier
Directed by János Szász (HU/DE/AT/FR, 2013, 109)
In a village on the Hungarian border, two young brothers grow up during wartime with their cruel grandmother and must learn every trick of evil to survive in the absurd world of adults.

Story of My Death/Història de la Meva Mort
Directed by Albert Serra (ES/FR, 2013, 148)
Casanova hires a new servant to witness the last moments of his life. Leaving a gallant and libertine French castle he spends his last days in the poor and dark lands of northern Europe. There, his casual society life and rational thoughts are collapsing against a force, represented by Dracula and his eternal power.

The Cranes Are Flying/Letyat Zhuravli
Directed by Mikhail Kalatozov (USSR, 1957, 97)
Veronica and Boris are blissfully in love, until the eruption of World War II tears them apart. Boris is sent to the front lines...and then communication stops. Meanwhile, Veronica tries to ward off spiritual numbness while Boriss draft-dodging cousin makes increasingly forceful overtures.

Purple Noon/Plein Soleil
Directed by René Clément (FR/IT, 1960, 118)
A rich American industrialist gives Tom Ripley the task of bringing his son Philippe home. Tom, also a former friend of Philippe, finds him in Italy enjoying himself with his mistress Marge Duval and with no intention of returning to the US. Tom, thinking his mission to be over, takes advantage by taking a holiday with Philippe...

Directed by Kim Ki-duk (KR, 2013, 89)
Consumed with hatred for her husband for his long time infidelity, a wife takes revenge against him but ends up inflicting a wound upon their son, and then disappears overwhelmed with guilt. The boy becomes miserable because of the deceit of his father, and so the father cuts off his manhood, which is the source of all this misery and dedicates himself entirely to his son. As a result, the wound somewhat heals, but when the wife returns home one day the family is driven towards a more horrific destruction.

The Past/Le passé
Directed by Asghar Farhadi (FR/IT, 2013, 130)
Following a four-year separation, Ahmad returns to Paris from Tehran in order to finalise the divorce procedure. During his brief stay, Ahmad discovers the conflicting nature of Maries relationship with her daughter Lucie. Ahmads efforts to improve this relationship soon unveils a secret from their past.

Liv & Ingmar
Directed by Dheeraj Akolkar (NO/UK/IN, 2012, 83)
An affectionate yet truthful account of the 42 years and 12 film-long relationship between legendary actress Liv Ullmann and master filmmaker Ingmar Bergman. Told entirely from Livs point of view, this rollercoaster journey of extreme highs and lows is constructed as a collage of images and sounds from the timeless Ullmann-Bergman films.

Directed by Yolande Moreau (FR/BE, 2013, 107)
The meeting of two lonely, marginal souls. There is Henri, a man in his 50s, limp, resigned, somewhat alcoholic. And Rosette, a (slightly) mentally challenged woman who dreams of love, sexuality, normality...

Tip Top
Directed by Serge Bozon (LU/FR/BE, 2013, 106)
Two policewomen from Internal Affairs arrive in a provincial precinct to investigate the death of an Algerian woman who was an informer. One punches, the other eyes, "tip top".

Eat Sleep Die/Äta Sova Dö
Directed by Gabriela Pichler (SE, 2012, 104)
When the forceful young Muslim Swedish/Balkan take-no-sh*t factory worker Raša loses her job, she faces the system of unemployment. With no high school diploma, no job but her boots deeply stained with the mud of the small town she grew up in Raša finds herself on a collision course with society.

Sex, Drugs & Taxation/Spies & Glistrup
Directed by Christoffer Boe (DK, 2013, 110)
Maybe the best thing to come out of Scandinavia during the hippie years was, in fact, the story of a radical libertarian and a hedonist capitalist. Their friendship, forged by being outsiders in a conformist country, took them through years of adulation and success, with slight detours into the welcoming arms of vilification and imprisonment. A joyride through taxation, mass travel, hookers and politics.

Ulrich Seidl: Total Retrospecctive
Paradise: Love/Paradies: Liebe
(AT/DE/FR, 2012, 120)
On the beaches of Kenya theyre known as Sugar Mamas: European women who seek out African boys selling love to earn a living. Teresa, a 50-year-old Austrian and mother of a daughter entering puberty, travels to this vacation paradise and finally she must recognise love is a business here.

Paradise: Faith/Paradies: Glaube
(AT/FR/DE, 2012, 113)
For Anna Maria, an X-ray technician, paradise lies with Jesus. She devotes her vacation to missionary work. She daily goes door to door, carrying a foot-high statue of the Virgin Mary. One day, after years of absence, her husband, an Egyptian Muslim confined to a wheelchair, comes home. Prayers are now joined by fighting.

Paradise: Hope/Paradies: Hoffnung
(AT/FR/DE, 2013, 91)
While her mother, Teresa, travels to Kenya, and her aunt does missionary work for Jesus Christ, Melanie, an overweight 13-year-old, spends her summer vacation in a strictly-run diet camp in the Austrian countryside. Between sports activities and nutritional counselling, pillow fights and her first cigarettes, she falls in love with the camp director, a doctor 40 years her senior.

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    Ukraine Truth
    Rights We Didnt Know We Had

    Throughout EuroMaidan much has been made of Ukrainians making a stand for their rights. What exactly those rights are were never clearly defined. Ukraine ratified the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1952. The first article of the Declaration states all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights, they are endowed with reason and conscience, and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood. The ousted and overthrown Ukrainian government showed to the world they dont understand the meaning of these words.

    Kyiv Culture

    Pulling Strings
    Located on Hrushevskoho Street the epicentre of EuroMaidan violence, home to battles, blazes and barricades childrens favourite the Academic Puppet Theatre had to shut down in February. Nevertheless, it is getting ready to reopen this March with a renewed repertoire to bring some laughter back to a scene of tragedy. Operating (not manipulating) puppets is a subtle art that can make kids laugh and adults cry. Whats On meets Mykola Petrenko, art director of the Theatre, to learn more about those who pull the strings behind the show.


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