Watch “The Italian” and “A Woman in Berlin”
Someone who wants to take a good hard clear look at Vladimir Putin’s Russia cannot do better than to screen Andrei Kravchuk’s devastating 2005 drama “The Italian” (winner of the 2005 Berlin Film Festival), currently airing on the Sundance movie channel. Filmed at a real orphanage outside St. Petersburg and cast with real orphans, including a brillant and heart-wrenching performance by Kolya Spiridonov as the title character, the film shows Russia as it really is, in all its brutal coldness and deprivation.
It shows the barbaric conditions in which ordinary Russians live, full of contempt and corruption, and the far more brutal torture they inflict on those not lucky enough to be “ordinary” such as orphans. Every single frame in the movie is a slice of Russia life, just exactly as it is lived today under Vladimir Putin. Truly, a picture is worth a thousand words.
It also sends the message that Russians, like the little hero of the film, who are willing to risk everything to stand up to the power of their government, its criminality and its corruption, can win. Just as the USSR fell, so to the malignant KGB regime of Vladimir Putin can collapse if Russians who love their country are willing to demand democracy.
In theaters now is another film that offers mighty insights into the horror tht is Russia, namely “A Woman in Berlin.” This harrowing portrait of a German woman caught up in the Red Army’s systemmatic rape of German civilians during World War II reminds us that the USSR was not the innocent victim it pretends to be. Paired with a video screening of 2007’s “Katyn” about the barbaric massacre of Polish officers by the Red Army in the Katyn forest, an act they tried to blame on the Nazis, the film is a essential clarification of the realith that the Russians were just as bad as Hitler’s forces if not worse. And let’s not forget that Stalin and Hitler were best buddies before the war, signing a secret pact dividing up Eastern Europe and selling the West down the river.
See these movies, and tell others about them. The world must be warned about the neo-Soviet nightmare being brewed in Russia by the clan of proud KGB spies who hold power before it is too late — if it is not too late already.