Sergei Loznitsa / LT, NL, 2021 / 246 min.
Singing even a peaceful song can unleash a revolution. Lithuanian politician Vytautas Landsbergis looks back on his country’s independence struggle in this captivating masterclass on the collapse of the Soviet Union by the great chronicler Sergei Loznitsa.
Sergei Loznitsa is a consummate chronicler of the history of Eastern Europe, covering both fairly recent events such as the Ukrainian revolt in Maidan (2014) and earlier ones such as Stalin’s funeral in State Funeral (2019). Always vigilant in his representation of the past, he skillfully uses archive footage to make you feel like you are an eyewitness. So too in this film about the Baltic nation of Lithuania from 1989 to 1991, when it broke away from the Soviet Union. This period of peaceful protests involving lots of singing came to be known as the "singing revolution."
As one of the founders of the independence movement, the now 88-year-old Vytautas Landsbergis found himself at the center of a radical historic shift. His perceptive reflections are complemented by extensive archive footage of demonstrations, party congresses, and Soviet military intervention. The lengthy archive segments bear witness to the patience required of Landsbergis and his compatriots on the path to freedom. A captivating and detailed history lesson on the breakup of the Soviet Union.
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