Ukrainian (Film) History 101: Zvenigora

A millenium of Ukrainian history told through the story of the mythical Grandfather guarding the treasures of Ukraine against the numerous invaders.

Oleksandr Dovzhenko
Running time
Country of origin
Soviet Union
Довженко-Центр / Dovzhenko Centre
100% of the ticket sales are forwarded to the largest Ukrainian film archive – Dovzhenko Centre in Kyiv, that is struggling to keep its doors open during the invasion.

This film was conceived as plain revolutionary propaganda, with even the director himself calling it his “party membership card”. Around the film’s release, however, the Soviet newspapers started calling it out for being “bourgeois and nationalistic”, a label that has proven to be quite a good indicator of a film’s artistic merit.

The twelve intervowen episodes of Zvenigora, composed in a dream-like structure, take the viewer on an exciting, surreal thousand-year long ride – from the Cossacks’ confrontations with Poles to the industrialization following the October revolution.

Today, Zvenigora is venerated equally for its unique, avantgarde film language, its innovative storytelling devices, hybrid form and its vast, overwhelming view of Ukrainian history

“I am Zvenigora”, Dovzhenko wrote later, “so contrary, so visionary, often uncontrollable, pierced by an acute sense of conflict and the rhythm of all time”.

Full program

1st June Zvenigora
7th June Shadows of Forgotten
Ancestors + Kyiv Frescoes

14th June Asthenic Syndrome
21st June Oxygen Starvation

All screenings begin at 19:30.

Click on a film title for more information and separate tickets.

Click here for the description of the whole program and the discounted combi-ticket of 24,08€.