KLONDIKE – Review by Justina Walford

When we see expectant parents, we think of nurseries and colorful mobiles with the laughter of nervous parents emotionally in sync and awaiting their important day. But in the dark of Klondike’s opening scene, it doesn’t take long to realize that this typical expectant parents’ conversation is not what we expect. The couple has a hole in their house. The environment is bleak and brown. And their conversation is interrupted by a loud explosion. So now we expect a drama with action and blood. But no. Again, we are turned around by the dry, absurdist wit of writer and director Maryna Er Gorbach, and we see this couple struggle with the mundane as much as with the mind games of politics and war.

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SPOTLIGHT JUNE, 2022: Larysa Artiugina, Documentarian, Activist, and Cultural Champion

To most of the world, Russia’s massive, armed aggression against Ukraine in February 2022 came as a shock. For Ukrainian filmmaker and activist Larysa Artiugina, it may have seemed all but inevitable. Artiugina has been on the ground in eastern Ukraine, where Russia has been shelling Ukrainian citizens continuously since 2014, telling stories that depict the country’s plight and resistance—work she continues in a variety of roles. For her trouble, she has been placed on a Russian hit list.

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