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14th DMZ Docs(2022)

I AM DOCU



The Kiev Trial

Sergei LOZNITSA

  • Netherlands, Ukraine
  • 2022
  • 106min
  • 12 +
  • DCP
  • color

AP

Synopsis

The film discovers and reconstructs archive footage of the trial of Nazi war criminals who perpetrated the massacre of Jews in Kiev, Ukraine in 1946. Twelve German soldiers testify of their crimes from the witness stand, while survivors and eyewitnesses recount the historical scene with vivid voices. Derived from Sergei Loznitsa's previous work Babi Yar. Context(2021), this film tells the story about criminals who enjoyed war and those who barely survived the war.

Review

In January 1946, a war crimes trial was held in Kiev, Ukraine, for the Holocaust committed there during World War II. Twelve former German soldiers were summoned and tried, all sentenced to be hanged. The war crimes trial in Kiev is a little-known historical event, and Sergei Loznitsa, an expert on this matter, provides us with a rich and elaborately edited story based on vivid material found in film archives. Following on from his previous film Babi Yar. Context(2021), he summons the Holocaust in Ukraine to hint at the genocide currently taking place there. Fulfilling the mission of a documentary that understands, and preserves the memories of tragedy, The Kiev Trial delivers vividness as if watching a well-organized court drama through a logical arrangement of archived images. From the moment the camera is installed in the courtroom, the audience feels the tension as if sitting on the jury seat and listening to the testimony of the slayers, survivors, and witnesses. The ending scene showing the results of the war crimes trial is also quite shocking.

Director

  • Sergei LOZNITSA

    Sergei Loznitsa grew up in Kiev,Ukraine.He has been making films since 1996, and by now he has directed 25 award-winning documentaries and 4 fiction films.​ 

Credit