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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

France on Film

The annual Evenings of French Film festival rolls into town on 23 January for a week of fabulous French cinema. With five flicks up for grabs, including Best Days Ahead, On My Way, 9 Month Stretch, A Castle in Italy, and Grand Central, we talk to Rebecca Zlotowski, director of Grand Central, to get a feel for what you can expect this week.

Your name is very interesting Rebecca Myriam Clara Zlotowski for someone with French citizenship, can you give me a little of your background?
Well, my father was born in Poland and my mother was born in Morocco, but I was born and raised in France. Actually, I see that I have just one nationality. As Jewish Poles, we do not have a lot of family left in Poland, and so I was not raised with the Polish culture at all. In fact, the most interesting aspect of my childhood would be Judaism maybe. But actually, I feel 100% French.

You have directed two feature-length films, Belle Epine and Grand Central. But you have also done a lot of writing for various types of films do you prefer writing to directing?
You know, I was in the script department in school, and so I never touched a camera before I made my first film. This is something pretty rare in France but I had the chance to have a very trusting producer in Belle Epine. Actually, I love them both! (laughs). As a director, I feel that writing is one of the most important aspects of the work; I dont see cinema as a pyramid, where at the top you have the director.

The film coming to Kyiv, Grand Central, features a nuclear power plant. Ukraine has a special relationship with nuclear power were you at all conscious of Ukraines history with Chornobyl when writing the script?
I was born in the 80s and so the first encounter I had with nuclear power was Chornobyl, because it was such a world event. Unfortunately, there was another trauma Fukishima. We started writing the script maybe six or seven months before this disaster, but when it happened, it was like a confirmation that we had to do something with this subject. Maybe we would have had difficulties making the film before because as a topic it was not that sexy, but after Fukishima and the collective consciousness surrounding it, people were more interested.

There are a number of risks the characters in Grand Central take is that your secret to a good film, risk-taking?
I really have a strong desire to see people in danger, and I feel that danger and the proximity of death is a high factor of sexiness. Maybe its because I have a very libidinous link to those situations I think that love and death are very closely connected. So when I set up characters in a situation of danger and risk, it brings something to the film that is really intense.

You have been called one of Frances brightest, most serious-minded young helmers by critics what do you make of such praise?
Dont believe them!

Are you superstitious?
Not that much. Although, I think that luck is something important in making a film you can have everything, but if you dont have that amount of luck that you need, that we all need not to have a catastrophe on the set, you cannot do anything with your film. So, Im not superstitious, but I do believe in luck, and I believe I have been lucky.

Evenings Of French Film
2329 January
Tickets: 50hrv, 70hrv opening night
Kyiv Cinema (V Vasylkivska 19)

Les Beaux Jours (Best Days Ahead) (tragicomedy, France, 2013, 94)
Director: Marion Vernoux
Many see retirement as a bullet, crippling their former active life. But Carolina sees things in a different light: she enjoys new experiences and violates every rule when she begins a torrid romance with a young teacher.
23 January at 19.00, 26 January at 21.00

Elle sen va (On My Way) (romance, France, 2013, 116)
Director: Emmanuelle Bercot
A former beauty queen and owner of an aging provincial bistro is on the brink of ruin, amid a failed relationship. Unable to withstand the stress, she embarks on a journey through France with an unexpected companion.
24 January at 19.00, 27 January at 21.00, 28 January at 19.00

Grand Central (romance, France/Austria, 2013, 94)
Director: Rebecca Zlotowski
Gary is a capable but capricious young man, who rarely makes promises and does everything on the fly. His carefree lifestyle, however, is interrupted when he decides to take a job at a nuclear power station. Among the reactors, in an atmosphere of intense radioactivity, he finds everything he was looking for: money, a close-knit team, a family. Here he meets Carol, the fiancé of a colleague. Forbidden love and radiation slowly poison him. Every day poses a new threat.
24 January at 21.00, 25 January at 19.00, 29 January at 19.00

9 Mois Ferme (9 Month Stretch) (romantic comedy, France, 2013, 82)
Director: Albert Dupontel
The storys heroine a strong woman, respected judge and workaholic, who learns she is pregnant, which comes as a bit of a shock as she doesnt remember having relations with any men in the most recent past. After a little investigation, she learns the father of her unborn child is a notorious criminal sadist, whom she pursues with a vengeance.
25 January at 21.00, 26 January at 19.00, 29 January at 21.00

Un chateau en Italie (A Castle in Italy) (tragicomedy, France, 2013, 104)
Director: Valeria Bruni Tedeschi
Louises dreams had long faded when she receives newfound hope in the form of the handsome Nathan. Meanwhile, as love begins to blossom, a family of Italian industrialists strive to persevere in uncertain times.
27 January at 19.00, 28 January at 21.00

* films shown are in their original language with Ukrainian subtitles

by Lana Nicole

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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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