Maria Antonova’s short documentary is one of the bravest projects we have seen at this festival since day one. It deals with a significant problem in Russia – the LGBT minority. Even though the media does not cover the stories with high exposure, some of them are surfacing once in a while, and we can read about terrible cases of people getting murdered for being gay, or being tortured by the police, or even being imprisoned for not being as the government wants you to be. For us, it is almost impossible to imagine such a situation, but we have to open our eyes and realize that these things happen not so far from us.
Antonova’s documentary is an excellent sociological experiment for the western world to better understand the horrors that are hiding in one of the largest countries on earth. The testimonies hidden behind knitted dolls are shocking, and any viewer who finds the power to watch ‘Save LGBT in Russia’ should take the short as a door to an unexplored land that can and will be shocking.
There is not one comment to describe the first part of the video – government officials describing the LGBT community like a plague for society, discriminating it, and even enticing people to violence and torture against them. We thought maybe it was a bitter joke, but after a quick search on Google, everything became more evident, and the newsreels we have encountered were more than explanatory. The second part of this documentary hides the faces and identities of the participants to keep them safe, but offers the insights relentlessly, enough to keep you hooked on the subject.
After the anarcho-punk band ‘Pussy Riot’ got famous for supporting LGBT rights, the news of how Russia treats this minority emerged to the whole world. It is good to see now that other artists are willing to make a statement to the world, all with the purpose of making their voices heard.
Review written by Vlad A.G