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Orange Winter

3 customer reviews

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(Nov 20, 2007)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Nov. 21st, 2004. Outraged with a falsified presidential election the people of Kiev, Ukraine took to the streets. The biggest mass protest in post-Soviet history captivated the world and marked the beginning of the Orange Revolution. ORANGE WINTER chronic


In the documentary Orange Winter orange blooms throughout Kiev, Ukraine, the epicenter of dissent over that country's stolen 2004 presidential elections. Outraged Ukrainians adopted the color that winter to express support for the pro-Western presidential candidate, Viktor A. Yushchenko, who was poisoned with dioxin by unknown enemies to protect his establishment-supported rival, Viktor F. Yanukovich. The film's director, Andrei Zagdansky, and his co-screenwriter, Alexander Genis, depict Ukraine's political and social realities, showing riot police facing throngs of orange-clad protestors and television newscasts repeating the official story of an inevitable and legitimate Yanukovich victory. But Orange Winter is more than a mere history lesson. Like Norman Mailer's nonfiction novel The Armies of the Night, about the 1967 antiwar march on Washington, this movie characterizes a body politic as a living thing, and charts its internal changes as if it were the protagonist in a drama. Matt Zoller Seitz, The New York Times --The New York Times

A concise and cogent account of epochal events. Global tube exposure awaits. Joe Leydon --Variety

...a candid and exciting nonfiction account of a fascinating contemporary popular struggle. Bruce Bennet --New York Sun

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Viktor Yushchenko, Viktor Yanukovych
  • Directors: Andrei Zagdansky
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Dolby, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: AZ Films L.L.C.
  • DVD Release Date: November 20, 2007
  • Run Time: 72 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000XAAE44
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #368,763 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Igor Afanasyev on February 19, 2008
Documentaries do not often push genre envelope. And for obvious reasons: documentary is first and foremost a document. Zagdansky's Orange Winter transcends the boundaries of a political reportage-chronicle of the fight between two presidential candidates, Victor Yushchenko and Victor Yanukovich, or for that matter between the West and East of Ukraine in 2004.
The director describes the days and hours of the Orange Revolution, intertwining striking shots of hundreds of thousands of people on the streets of Kiev with choir scenes in Mussorgsky's opera Boris Godunov, the infamous tsar-murderer on stage with modern Ukrainian politicians.

Another "discovery": excerpts from Alexander Dovzhenko's silent masterpiece Earth elevate captured events into a different space-time continuum, into Eternity.

Orange Winter is an intense emotional essay on People and Power, and it leaves you with a tragic sense of the everlasting conflict between the people and the state. It is sad and yet uplifting, as real art must be.

Igor Afanasyev
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Thomas M. Shelley on April 7, 2010
Ukraine's 2010 election concludes once and for all the era ushered in by the Orange Revolution. Victor Yushchenko has been swept aside receiving a paltry 5.5 percent. In what can only be surmised as a spiteful last move Yushenko declared the infamous and controversial Stepan Bendera a Hero of Ukraine.

A political tactic akin to the retreating Roman army's poisoning of wells. Yushenko's former fiery ally, turned bitter enemy, Yulia Tymoshenko conceded defeat. The semi-literate ex-convict Victor Yanukovich, who's fraudulent initial victory in 2004 set of the Orange Revolution, has secured the presidency in what is widely reported as a fair and balanced election. This turn of political fortunes is however more farce than irony. In light of these events Orange Winter seems all the more prophetic, viewing the historic events of 2004 with a cool eye. The film possesses an seemingly preternatural sense for the disparity between the brave actions of a desperate people pushed to the limit of tolerance and the usurper-politicians staging their power plays on this backdrop.

Orange Winter is no mere documentary, rather a meditation on the fate of a nation with a rich commentary on the theater of politics and power. A film who's sad relevance has only grown with time. Highly recommended if you are looking beyond just a political reportage.
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Viewing only Orange Winter will not lead one to have an in-depth, impartial understanding of what really happened during the Orange Revolution in Ukraine; and, especially so, since the commentary and visuals are flavored throughout with both subtle and obvious biases. For a true picture of the events as they unfolded, see the DVD called Orange Revolution by Film Director Steve York--for it should be added to history curriculums worldwide and is a must-see documentary (please see my review of Orange Revolution for additional comments).

Throughout the documentary, filmmaker (creator, director, editor) Zagdansky's lens and commentary both flavor events, reflecting them in a subjective reporting style. As an example, a film segment shows a senior holding a poster of Ukrainian bard Taras Shevchenko, while the following subtitle and narration are seen and heard: "For the holy fools, the Maidan became the church steps." That is the type of commentary and political agenda that viewers are treated to in this Zagdansky film--not objective reporting, but loaded personal commentary.

Two Ukrainian presidential candidates, both named Viktor, both with last names beginning with Y, but dioxin/Agent Orange poisoning, which disfigured the face of one almost killing him, and accusations of falsified election results made this election irregular by any standard, and made for riveting international headline news and eager Internet/TV/radio observation by millions globally. As with other DVDs documenting the Orange Revolution, Orange Winter is a documentary which follows the story of the rigged 2004 presidential election in Ukraine which culminated in the Orange Revolution; however, it approaches its subject in a unique way.
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