Cleveland International Film Festival } March 22 – April 1, 2023 } Playhouse Square

WEDNESDAY 19.07.1961

Year: 1997
Country: Russia/Germany/Frinland/Britain
Run Time: 93 minutes

During the era of Soviet communism there was a curious propaganda broadcast from the English-language Radio Moscow that cheerfully declared, yes, there was a dictator who reigned in mother Russia - the children, whom Soviet society doted on and indoctrinated. In 1993, with the Soviet Union fallen, documentary fimmaker Viktor Kossakovsky embarked on an audacious project: to cross-section those children of the Revolution, by tracing everyone born in Leningrad (the once and future St. Petersberg) on the same day, July 19, 1961. After nearly four years, Kossakovsky came up with 70 residents, from laborers (paid in meat, because there is no money) to Western-style entrepreneurs, from artists to prisoners, who appear on camera in this sweeping verite documentary. WEDNESDAY 19.07.1961 unflinchingly holds images of birth, death, love, joy, despair, and, most of all, the oddly romantic fatalism of the Russian soaul, passed on in an unforgettable maternity-room finale, from one heartbroken generation to another. Rarely does one see so vivid a portrait of a people or a nation. (In Russian with English subtitles)

Viktor Kossakovsky

Viola Stephan

Viktor Kossakovsky

Viktor Kossakovsky

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