Film Archive

Countries (Film Archive)

International Programme 2019
Above the Styx Maria Stoianova

Easter on a Kiev cemetery: People flock to the graves of their beloved ones, dine with them and celebrate life. An intimate social study of a country rich in traditions.

Above the Styx

Documentary Film
Ukraine
2019
29 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Maria Stoianova
Maria Stoianova
Anna Khvyl
Maria Stoianova, Yulia Danylchuk, Maria Terebus, Liudmyla Paraskiva, Kateryna Rybachuk, Anastasiya Feshchuk, Ivan Bershadskyi, Alla Onopchenko
Maria Stoianova
Maria Terebus
Andrii Rogachov
A young man meticulously sticks plastic flowers into the ground. An elderly couple arrange a picnic right next to a grave. A small cake, sandwiches, eggs. It’s Easter on a Kyiv cemetery. Countless people flock to the graves of their loved ones to celebrate life, commemorate the dead and collect a few drops of holy water from the priest. The group of filmmakers has made an accomplished intimate social study of the rich traditions of their homeland.

Julia Weigl
Extended Reality: DOK Neuland 2019
Aftermath: Euromaidan Alexey Furman, Sergii Polezhaka

This VR documentary reconstructs the events of 20 February 2014 on Kiev’s Independence Square. On that day, fifty people lose their lives when the police open fire on the Euromaidan protesters.

Aftermath: Euromaidan

VR Experience
Ukraine
2019
30 minutes

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Alexey Furman
Alexey Furman, Sergii Polezhaka
DakhaBrakha
Nikita Yurenev
Daria Zubrytska, Yaroslava Drutsa
Sergii Polezhaka, Sergii Korovaynyi
Nikita Bohdanov
Andrii Kulykov, Marko Suprun
Sergii Polezhaka
Kirill Zhylinsky
Anastasia Trepition
Liza Nesterenko, Artem Yudin
Kirill Zhylinsky
This VR documentary reconstructs the events of 20 February 2014 on Kiev’s Independence Square. On that day, fifty people lose their lives when the police open fire on the Euromaidan protesters. Using archive material and 360° interviews, the story unfolds step by step in an environment recreated using CGI and photogrammetry.

Lars Rummel, Marie Hinkelmann

Agnosis

Animadoc
Germany,
Ukraine
2015
39 minutes
subtitles: 
German

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Anita Müller
Anita Müller
Oksana Kod'
Anita Müller, Clara Wieck
Anita Müller
Anita Müller
Anita Müller
Florian Marquardt
As in “Chthonic City”, the painter Anita Müller gives wings to her filmed material in the catacombs of Odessa: statements re-connote documentary images, additions visualise dreams or thoughts. She takes associative liberties that suggest comparisons with jazz. The invisible protagonist who lost his way on a spiritual search of the underworld and disappeared without a trace may have felt as ephemeral and fluctuating as her visual creations.

Cornelia Klauß
Young Cinema Competition (until 2014) 2014
All Things Ablaze Oleksandr Techynskyi, Aleksey Solodunov, Dmitry Stoykov

The Maidan as a battlefield: protest turns into violence and loss of control – on both sides. A breathless, unstoppable movement, driven by the energy of the masses, towards the inferno.

All Things Ablaze

Documentary Film
Ukraine
2014
82 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Yulia Serdyukova
Oleksandr Techynskyi, Aleksey Solodunov, Dmitry Stoykov
Anton Baibakov
Oleksandr Techynskyi, Aleksey Solodunov, Dmitry Stoykov
Marina Maykovskaya, Aleksey Solodunov
Oleg Golovoshkin, Boris Peter
The Ukraine may be ablaze for a while yet and the symbol of the Maidan in Kiev – burning barrels and tyre barricades – may continue to be the visual and olfactory nexus of the revolutionary memory. Sooty faces, determined but tired, their heads bloody but hard. The many-voiced battle cry “Glory to Ukraine, glory to the heroes”, a strange common denominator shared by all the rebels, echoes across the square. What started with drums, bagpipes and European flags and turned seamlessly into bloody resistance against the truncheon battalions and violence on both sides sparked – which this collective project, expressive and informative despite its abstinence of commentary makes abundantly clear – an energy in the masses that was unpredictable and unstoppable.
There is a scene at the heart of the film whose length takes it to the limits of endurance but makes its symbolism almost palpable: protesters joyfully and forcefully demolish a huge bust of Lenin, taking victory photos (not quite sure about what precisely Lenin has to do with their hatred) while an old Soviet character hugs his beloved colossal stone fragment and refuses to let go until he almost collapses. The Maidan as a battlefield. Quelle horreur!

Barbara Wurm



MDR Film Prize 2014

Late Harvest 2019
Ceremony Phil Collins

What does Manchester in 2017 have in common with the Russian revolution? Friedrich Engels. His theories form the starting point for reflections on the state of contemporary Great Britain.

Ceremony

Documentary Film
Germany,
Ukraine,
UK
2018
67 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Siniša Mitrović, Natasha Dack Ojumu
Phil Collins
Mica Levi, Demdike Stare, Gruff Rhys
Neus Ollé-Soronellas, Joseph Briffa, Jonathan Stow, Alex Large, David Bewick, Pedro Labanca, Federico Funari, Phil Collins, Siniša Mitrović, Matthias Schellenberg
David Charap, Andreas Dalström
Phil Collins
Jochen Jezussek
What do 2017 Manchester and the Russian Revolution 100 years earlier have in common? Friedrich Engels. Before he wrote the Communist Manifesto with Karl Marx, the philosopher and entrepreneur had lived for a few years in the northern English industrial capital of the 19th century. Taking Engels’ communist theories as a starting point, the artist Phil Collins reflects on their topicality: What is the “condition of the working class in England” – the title of one of his main works – today? Wouldn’t Engels be more likely to write about the “working poor”? What are the differences between the past and present “tyranny of capital”, which still seems to have our societies, our life, thinking and actions firmly in its grip? Is that why communism has become a conceivable ideal again?

And Engels himself, too, gets to return to Manchester, in the shape of a statue whose transport from a Ukrainian village to its new home in the former industrial capital of the world the film follows – a many-layered socialist road movie from one of the outer edges of the EU to the (soon to be) other.

Frederik Lang
International Programme 2013
Cornered Dmytro Tiazhlov

The Ukrainian village of Panasivka has no public transport connection. A plucky citizen pits herself against the authorities ... An amusing lesson in democracy.

Cornered

Documentary Film
Ukraine
2012
25 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Ella Shtyka
Dmytro Tiazhlov
Dmytro Tiazhlov
Dmytro Tyazhlov
Karim Fadl Naser
Panasivka, Ukraine, has about 50 residents left, most of them old. There used to be a pig farm here, a post office, a bank, and a thrice-daily bus service to the city. If you want to go shopping today, you have to toil along the dusty dirt-road through the forest in one of the cars (always in need of repairs) – the road was never finished. But the ingenious citizen Zoya Ivanivna Shulha remembers a decree once passed by Father Yanukovich that promised all residents public transport connection, and a second that promised transparency in all administrative decisions. So they put their noses to the grindstone: letters are written, signatures of either incredulous or amused peasants are collected (“What for? It’s no use anyway.”), and from time to time shots of vodka are poured for the fatherland. Finally, even the president is addressed and a neat trick is played on the privatisation of the public sector.
We are reminded of Zoshchenko’s satires: “Aviation, it’s making progress.” Democracy, it’s making progress, too.

Grit Lemke

Deep Love

Animated Film
Ukraine
2019
14 minutes
subtitles: 
_without dialogue / subtitles

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Andrij Granytsia
Mykyta Lyskov
Anton Bajbakov, Kurs valyut, Oleksij Dyachkov
Mykyta Lyskov
Mykyta Lyskov
Mykyta Lyskov
Mykyta Lyskov
Anton Bajbakov
The bald eagle, power animal of the United States, flies with a star-shaped cloaca over a Ukrainian city and drops an egg whose impact generates a rising nuclear mushroom. Comrade Lenin’s skull bursts. A confident man dives head first into a waterless pool. Things don’t look good in this country which is only beginning to try to find itself and paints its facades with blue and yellow stripes.

Carolin Weidner



Awarded with a Golden Dove in the Next Masters Competition Short Documentary and Animated Film.

Next Masters Wettbewerb 2017
Delta Oleksandr Techynskyi

Deep winter in the Bukovina in the thinly populated Danube delta: the season of the tough reed harvest. In this inhospitable and remote region, spirituality offers a sheltering home to the community.

Delta

Documentary Film
Germany,
Ukraine
2017
80 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Yulia Serdyukova, Gennady Kofman, Kirill Krasovski
Oleksandr Techynskyi
Oleksandr Techynskyi
Marina Maykovskaya
Oleg Golovoshkin
The thinly populated Danube delta in the Bukovina is situated at the EU’s exterior border on Romanian and Ukrainian territory. Far from the container ships on the main stream a network of tributaries branches out in an endless reed forest. Warm and cold browns alternate in the shifting light of midwinter. Walls of fog and grey water blur the horizon. Men cut their way through the high canes to harvest the reed. The camera pushes them to the edge of the frame. The strictly limited sharp focus sometimes turns them into strangers in an unreal landscape by which they are occasionally absorbed. It’s cold and wet as they cut the huge reeds, gather them in massive bunches and carry them across ice channels. The work is hard, the voices of the rural workers rough, the daily grind that must be survived is tough. In the pathless, wild isolation of this region, the orthodox faith offers shelter. Hectic and chaotic, buckets and bottles filmed from up close scoop the holy water out of the river. At the last benediction the village mourns by chanting, tightly packed around the deceased – the spiritual rituals of a small, isolated community encircled by the veins of the mighty Danube. Oleksandr Techynskyis haptic film captures the closeness in this wide expanse.

André Eckardt



Honorary Mention Next Masters Competition;
Nominated for MDR Film Prize, Healthy Workplaces Film Award, Goethe-Institut Documentary Film Prize

Diorama

Documentary Film
Ukraine
2018
12 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Nadia Parfan
Zoya Laktionova
Zoia Laktionova
Mykola Bazarkin
Zoya Laktionovа
Andrew Borysenko
Offscreen voices remember a childhood in Mariupol, happy days by the sea. With their schoolmates they had planted willow trees that still grace the shore, more than fifty years later. Today the beach is deserted, only a few fishermen are waiting for a catch. Even the deepwater port seems abandoned. The armed conflict in eastern Ukraine has changed everything overnight. The holiday region is now a dangerous exclusion zone. What’s left are the memories.

Annina Wettstein

From Crimea to Siberia: How Russia Is Tormenting Political Prisoners Sentsov and Kolchenko

Documentary Film
Ukraine
2018
64 minutes
subtitles: 
English
VO_English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Nataliya Gumenyuk
Anna Tsyhyma, Anhelyna Karyakyna
Anna Tsyhyma
Anhelyna Karyakyna
Anhelyna Karyakyna
The documentary tells the story of Ukrainian filmmaker Oleg Sentsov and activist Sasha Kolchenko, who were detained in Crimea during the conflict in 2014. Despite international protests, they were convicted of plotting terrorist acts and sent to Russian prisons. The film accompanies Sentsov’s sister, following the same route endured by the Ukrainian prisoners after their detention four years ago.
Next Masters Competition Short Film 2018
It’s Breathing Polina Olkhovnikova

Ambling through the gray landscapes of industry, traffic and the port of Zaporizhia, Ukraine, the flaneur catches the shapes of the city, orders them and seasons them with poetic interventions.

It’s Breathing

Documentary Film
Ukraine
2018
10 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Nadia Parfan
Polina Olkhovnikova
Ruslan Popov
Polina Olkhovnikova
Slava Polyantsev
Polina Olkhovnikova
Polina Olkhovnikova
Ksenia Vinogradova
Polina Olkhovnikova is a flaneuse ambling through the urban cosmos. She captures the shapes of the city, orders them and seasons them with small poetic interventions: a view through a prism, reduced animations. A meditative stroll set to trip hop beats which gives the restless director time to dream. And which does not aim for beauty, since she’s strolling through the grey industrial, traffic and harbour town of Zaporizhia.

André Eckardt


Nominated for the Young Eyes Film Award

Maidan

Documentary Film
Netherlands,
Ukraine
2014
128 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Sergei Loznitsa, Maria Choustova-Baker
Sergei Loznitsa
Sergei Loznitsa, Serhiy Stefan Stetsenko, Mykhailo Yelchev
Danielius Kokanauskis, Sergei Loznitsa
Vladimir Golovnitski
They sing the national anthem, together and with pathos, alone and accompanied by a guitar. They sing (an allusion to their unpopular President Yanukovych) “Vitya, ciao, Vitya, ciao, Vitya, ciao ciao ciao!”, Christmas carols and Ukrainian folk songs, they versify, rhyme, mock, revolt, celebrate. They rest, take care of each other, warm, cook and feed each other. They stick together and feel free. A new time has come. They can feel it.
Putting current political events in documentary form rarely succeeds. Sergei Loznitsa’s film “Maidan” is all the more impressive since it was completed a few months after the decisive events in Kiev. His long, calm and uncommented shots gradually coalesce into a narrative and something much bigger: the chronicle of a revolutionary national awakening, and, on another, higher level, the universal image of a people’s rebellion. The presence of the rostrum announces itself only on the soundtrack, likewise the bangs of smoke bombs and snipers later. Chants turn into battle cries, enthusiasm and esprit turn into fighting, heaviness, grief and ultimately mourning.
Today, as another few months have passed, one wishes that time had come to a standstill with the end of this film.

Barbara Wurm



Honorary Mention in the International Competition Documentary Film 2014

No Obvious Signs

Documentary Film
Ukraine
2018
62 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Mariya Berlinska, Alina Gorlova
Alina Gorlova
Ptakh Jung
Oleksiy Kuchma
Alina Gorlova
Alina Gorlova
Vasyl Yavtushenko
A war that destabilises the country and traumatises its people has been simmering in the Ukraine since 2014. Reservists like circa 50-year-old Oksana, who left the army highly decorated after her term of service ended, are struggling with the psychological effects of their experiences. But when the body looks unharmed, psychological trauma often goes unnoticed – by doctors as well as by those affected.

Oksana suffers from anxiety and extreme panic attacks and is among the few Ukrainians who have access to medically supervised treatment of their post traumatic stress disorder. The film follows a strong, thinking woman on her way back to life and demonstrates impressively how indelibly war eats into life.

Luc-Carolin Ziemann


Awarded with the MDR Film Prize

International Programme 2016
People Who Came to Power Oleksiy Radynski, Tomáš Rafa

Campfires, tents, barricades, armoured vehicles, masked soldiers, enraged crowds chanting slogans, pictures of the fallen on the walls, coffins being unloaded from a car.

People Who Came to Power

Documentary Film
Ukraine
2015
17 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Lyuba Knorozok
Oleksiy Radynski, Tomáš Rafa
Tomáš Rafa
Oleksiy Radynski, Tomáš Rafa, Jan Wachowski
Veronika Kanisheva
Campfires, tents, barricades, armoured vehicles, masked soldiers, enraged crowds chanting slogans, pictures of the fallen on the walls, coffins being unloaded from a car. The restless camera captures flags, preferably Russian ones or the one of the Donbass People’s Republic, rarely the Ukrainian one (and only on the enemy’s side). People everywhere talk of peace, but the facts say: war. The disturbing snapshot of an anarchic chaos that once wanted to be freedom.

Grit Lemke

Positive

Documentary Film
Ukraine
2014
29 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Svitlana Zinovyeva
Polina Kelm
Anton Baibakov
Maryna Liapina, Anna Voytenko, Ruslan Girin
Polina Kelm
Polina Kelm
Dmytro Skrypka
They are a real collective of the old kind, working and sighing together, boiling eggs with the immersion heater, dancing with the only man at the Christmas party and faithfully feeding a few cats. Lena, Taya and Tamara are editors in a Kiev film studio. Dusty film cans containing the material of a glorious past are stacked in the dim corridors while the platters of ancient editing tables are turning.
Polina Kelm takes a tender look at a vanishing world in which films were made with dexterity and given respectful attention without the crunch of pop corn, a world which was about skills and yet stagnant like the whole country. It’s true the women at the splicers dream of a work like “Avatar” – knowing that neither their studio nor they will ever be part of that industry. But they’re doubtless right about one thing: a good film does not need 3D.
Grit Lemke

Rodnye (Close Relations)

Documentary Film
Estonia,
Germany,
Latvia,
Ukraine
2016
112 minutes
subtitles: 
English

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Simone Baumann, Guntis Trekteris, Natalya Manskaya, Marianna Kaat
Vitaly Mansky
Harmo Kallaste
Aleksandra Ivanova
Pēteris Ķimelis, Gunta Ikere
Vitaly Mansky
Harmo Kallaste
Over the past few years, Vitaly Mansky’s own voice has found its way into his films again and again. He is a laconic commentator, deliberately factual and yet not without emotions. He wishes he had never been forced to make this film. This is how “Rodnye (Close Relations)” begins, his report of the eventful year between May 2014 and May 2015. For the Ukraine – the subject of the film – it was the most important year since World War Two ended: an ongoing political earthquake that left no stone standing and – to stick to the metaphors of social seismography – opened deep rifts between the people. Mansky’s balancing act does not lead to just anybody but to his nearest relatives. His birthplace in Lviv is the starting point of a journey that has much to offer. Surprise: his mother speaks Ukrainian; his great uncle is still alive – in Donbass! But also disappointment: the aunts – one of them living in western Ukraine, the other on the Crimea – have stopped talking to each other. And shock: his cousin’s son was drafted, which in late 2014 carries a deeper meaning.

Mansky himself has now moved out of his home near the Kremlin and lives in emigration, like so many others. There’s no place for nostalgia in his still disintegrating “home country”, his film teaches us – an attempt to approach the issue by a man who’s deliberately growing more and more estranged.

Barbara Wurm


Nominated for MDR Film Prize