ASEEES is delighted to announce the Film Screenings as part of our 2018 ASEEES Annual Convention in Boston, Dec 6-9.

We are grateful to the Working Group for Cinema & Television for their support in presenting this film series.

Resilience: How to Live 100 Russian Years, 2017, 25 min, dir. Mikhail Mordasov
Thursday, December 6, 8:00-9:00pm | Boston Marriott Copley Place, 3rd floor-Simmons
Introduction by Paul Richardson (Publisher, Russian Life magazine, co-producer of film)

In 1917, Russia was wrecked by revolution, famine, war, and unrest. And yet, all that year children were born. Resilience is a film about some of those children, who the filmmakers interviewed in their 100th year of life, and their remarkable stories. The film is in Russian with English subtitles.

Grisha Bruskin: A 30 Year Saga, Documentary Films by Nina Zaretskaya, 1992-2012, 1hr 30min, dir. Nina Zaretskaya
Thursday, December 6, 8:00-10:00pm | Boston Marriott Copley Place, 1st floor-Boylston
Introduction by Nina Zaretskaya (director) and Marina Adamovitch (Editor-in-chief, The New Review / Novyi Zhurnal)

Three documentaries by Nina Zaretskaya, revealing the creative development of one of the most distinguished Russian-American artists, Grisha Bruskin. The trilogy begins thirty years ago, focusing on two crucial events for the artist taking place in 1988 Moscow – his performance at the Kashirka exhibition hall and his participation in the first Russian Sotheby’s auction – and stretches out to the present day, providing the audience with the unique chance to understand in depth the art of this extraordinary artist.

BIRTH OF A HERO (30 min, 1992 – 1993)
From the TV cycle TV Gallery, the first documentary ever made on now world-famous Sots-artist Grisha Bruskin, “champion” of the first Sotheby’s auction in Russia.

GRISHA BRUSKIN (26 min, 2002)
From the TV cycle Classics of Contemporary Art, focused on internationally acclaimed contemporary artists, produced with the support of the Ford Foundation and Internews.

PAST IMPERFECT (26 min, 2012)
From the series of documentaries titled Russian America, profiling Russian-American cultural elite. Each character is from the former USSR and now living in New York.

The Eleventh Year, 1928, 54 min, dir. Dziga Vertov
Friday, December 7, 8:00-10:00pm | Boston Marriott Copley Place, 4th Floor-Provincetown
Introduced by John MacKay (Yale U)
Musical accompaniment by Jeff Rapsis (Silent Film Music)

Join Academic Studies Press for a screening of Dziga Vertov’s 1928 documentary The Eleventh Year accompanied by live musical performer Jeff Rapsis. Shot on location in Ukraine, this commemoration of the 1917 Revolution brings together two seemingly unconnected and infinitely distant moments in time: On the one hand, the construction of the world’s largest hydroelectric station on the Dniepr River, and, on the other, the excavation of a pair of two-thousand-year-old Scythian skeletons recently discovered at the site of the industrial enterprise.

Son of Mongolia, 1936, dir. Ilya Trauberg
Friday, December 7, 8:00-10:00pm | Boston Marriott Copley Place, 1st Floor-Boylston
Introduced by Darya Khrenova (Moscow State Art & Cultural U, granddaughter of Ilya Trauberg) and Daria Ezerova (Davidson College, President of Working Group on Cinema & Television)

Son of Mongolia (1936) is a feature film with which the history of Mongolian cinema began. Shot by a Soviet film director Ilya Trauberg, with the participation of a Soviet filming crew, the Lenfilm Studio, and actors from Ulan Bator, the film was meant to be the USSR’s gift to the people of Mongolia and the starting point of national cinema.

Son of Mongolia is a fictional story that follows a simple Mongolian shepherd Tseven and his struggle for happiness against local feudal lords and Japanese invaders. The film showcases the real Mongolia – almost immediately after the film was shot, the country switched to Cyrillic alphabet and lost its datsans. At the same time, surprisingly, all actors look as if they came out of American Westerns.

Already in 1941, Son of Mongolia was banned in Mongolia, and the dubbing for the film vanished from the Soviet Union. The film was effectively lost. In 2018, Ilya Trauberg’s granddaughter began the production of a film about her grandfather, restored the lost film, and returned it to the viewers. The New York Times referred to the Son of Mongolia as “the event of the year” and included in the list of best films ever made.

Banjo Romantika, 2014, 1hr 5 min, dir. Shara Lange
Saturday, December 8, 8:00-10:00pm | Boston Marriott Copley Place, 3rd floor-Suffolk
Introduced by Michaela Koller and Alice Apley (Documentary Educational Resources)

Banjo Romantika examines the popularity of American Bluegrass in the Czech Republic. For Czechs living under a communist regime, the sounds and imagery of traditional bluegrass were vastly significant, representing American ideals of freedom of choice, a return to nature, and life where a man was his own boss. Through instrument building, songwriting, and performance, Czech bluegrassers meld the past, the present, and the ever-changing political future into a lively musical tradition entirely its own.

Occupation 1968, 2018, 2hr 10min, dir. Peter Kerekes
Saturday, December 8, 8:00-10:00pm | Boston Marriott Copley Place, 1st floor-Boylston
Introduced by Catherine E. Portuges (U of Massachusetts Amherst)  and Daria Ezerova (Davidson College, President of Working Group on Cinema & Television)

Shot from the collective, subjective perspectives of soldiers from the “friendly” armies of the five Warsaw Pact countries that occupied Czechoslovakia, Occupation 1968 explores questions of personal responsibility, ethics and decision-making at a moment of choice between obeying the rules and saving lives. The directors of each short episode within the feature documentary were selected from Russia, Poland, Germany, Hungary and Bulgaria. The film is part of the Prague Spring on Screen panel series organized by the Working Group on Cinema and Television. 


Donbass, 2018, 1hr 50min, dir. Sergei Loznitsa
Saturday, December 8, 6:30-8:30pm | Boston Marriott Copley Place, 4th floor-Provincetown
Q&A Panel with Director Sergei Loznitsa, Birgit Beumers (Aberystwyth U), and Vitaly Chernetsky (U of Kansas), hosted by Oleh Kotsyuba (Harvard U), followed by wine and cheese reception

Donbass won the Directing Prize of Un Certain Regard at the 2018 Cannes Film Festival.

All convention attendees are welcome.

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