Sergei Loznitsa, the desperate

Black is black. The world of filmmaker Sergei Loznitsa is dark as tar. A relentless, lawless, hopeless world. Born in 1964 in Soviet Belarus, he followed his family to kyiv. A promising mathematician, hired as a scientist at the Institute of Cybernetics, he works on artificial intelligence. After the collapse of the USSR and the period of deceptive euphoria that began, he branched off to the National Institute of Cinematography in Moscow.

For twenty years, he has been moving from fiction to documentaries, with nearly twenty-five hard-hitting, disturbing films, focused on the rubble of a humanity ravaged by the steamroller of the Soviet past. Regularly selected at the Cannes Film Festival, his works cause a sensation with their dry and frontal style: My Joy (2010), In the fog (2012), International Critics Prize, A sweet woman (2017).

What he describes is a post-Soviet Orwellian world, the dark side of a humanity given over to its worst instincts, encouraged, unpunished, as in the chilling Donbass (2018). Loznitsa keeps repeating that he films what he sees, the eternal return of cruelty.

He just finished Natural history of destruction, a documentary about the bombing of German cities at the end of World War II. For Maidan, in 2014, he immersed himself for four months in the heart of the popular revolt against the Russians which ended in bloodshed and regained freedom. The people are the major actor in Ukraine’s future, he said. Whether Russia likes it or not.

Loznitsa now dreams of filming Putin on the benches of the International Criminal Court in The Hague, where he could one day be tried. Action!


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