Acclaimed director Sergei Loznitsa returns to documentary with this vital and urgent film about Ukraine's anti-government protests in Kiev's Maidan Square. Filmed over a period of ninety days, Loznitsa shoots from fixed camera positions capturing a carnival of singing, speeches, music and food. The people of Maidan appear to be full of promise and hope. But these scenes are stained with tension as we await the inevitable climax, as peaceful protest descends into violent street battle, Loznitsa frames it in the same beautiful, objective manner.
Epic in scale, breathtakingly cinematic and critically urgent, Maidan is a film to be experienced. This is portrait of an awakening nation rediscovering its identity is not just a document of a historic turning point for Ukraine, but a moving testament to human solidarity. This is formidable filmmaking.
The screening will be followed by a discussion with Raisa Sidenova a film historian specialising in Soviet documentary film and doctoral candidate at Yale University and Joanna Szostek, a postdoctoral research fellow at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies, UCL.