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Belarusian Waltz

Belarusian Waltz
Director: Andrzej Fidyk

Poland, Norway, 2007, 73 min., documentary
Belarus has been called "Europe's last dictatorship." Since 1994, Alexander Lukashenko has ruled the ex-Soviet republic with a despotic hand, jailing the opposition, shutting down the press and refusing to investigate the assassinations of dissidents. He has virtually silenced his critics — but not one lone performance artist who stages public stunts mocking the dictator's pretensions. Belarusian Waltz is the story of Alexander Pushkin, whose audacious, comical exploits find him facing the hostility of the police and the consternation of his family. An offbeat tale of post-modern street theatre meeting 1930s-style authoritarianism, the film offers a surprising window into the soul of the Belarusian people.

The director Andrzej Fidyk originally planned to make a documentary about how Lukashenko was selling out kolkhozes for very small sums of money. Fidyk’s friends told him that they could offer him a much more interesting topic: Aleksander Pushkin. Starting in Puskin’s hometown Bobr, Andrzej Fidyk’s camera team follows Pushkin through his every day life, his paintings, and performances in Minsk. The portrait of Pushkin shows a man of many facets: activist, performer, nationalist, and also male chauvinist. Is this the spirit of Belarusian people or can Belarus be described as a big performance? To find this out, don’t miss the Lithuanian premiere of Belarusian Waltz. Kaunas International Film Festival gives you Aleksander Pushkin!
Section: Identity

Screenplay: Andrzej Fidyk

Dir. of Photography: Adam Fręśko

Music: Krzesimir Dębski

Producer: Torstein Grude

Cast: Alexander Pushkin