Thursday, March 09, 2017

The Magnitsky Act – Behind the Scenes

Andrei Nekrasov the investigative journalist as the incredulous hero of his film The Magnitsky Act – Behind the Scenes.

Tampere Film Festival
Kotimainen kilpailu 3

T31 | 9.3. THU/TO 10:00 | PLEVNA 5 | alk. / from 8 €

In English and Russian.


Andrei Nekrasov | [TFF: Norway] [Norway / Finland / Denmark] 2016 | Documentary | 153 min
© 2016 Piraya Films AS / Illume Oy / Wingman Media APS
Theme song: "Замучен тяжелой неволей" (обр. Л. Шульгина - Г. Мачтет, 1876) / "Sait kärsiä puolesta aatteen" / "Slavery and Suffering" sung by the Red Army Choir.

TFF: What started as a drama about a Russian police plot to steal a billion dollars from a US financier and to murder his faithful tax lawyer Sergei Magnitsky, has become a real life investigation of contradicting versions of the crime. The Magnitsky Case is central for the policy of blacklisting bad guys from Putin’s Russia (“Magnitsky List”), which was then adopted by the West in retaliation for Russia’s actions in Ukraine. Shockingly for the film’s director, dissident and Putin basher Andrei Nekrasov, the official Western story turns out to have serious flaws.

Draama, joka alkoi venäläisten poliisien juonesta varastaa miljardi dollaria amerikkalaiselta sijoittajalta ja murhata hänen uskollinen veroasianajajansa Sergei Magnitski, muuttuu todelliseksi tutkimukseksi rikoksen ristiriitaisista tulkinnoista. Magnitskin tapaus on keskeinen linjaukselle laittaa Putinin Venäjän rikolliset mustalle listalle (”Magnistkin lista”), jonka länsimaat ottivat käyttöön kostona Venäjän toimille Ukrainassa. Elokuvan ohjaaja, toisinajattelija ja Putinin solvaaja Andrei Nekrasov tyrmistyy saadessaan selville, että lännen virallinen tarina sisältääkin vakavia puutteita. TFF

AA: A mix of documentary and fiction. Much of the first movement of the film is a fictional reconstruction executed in thriller mode with sex and violence and gory detail.

A volte-face happens in Andrei Nekrasov's film as stunning as in Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho. The melodramatic mode of the first movement makes the peripeteia particularly shocking.

This film is famous for this fact that it starts as an illustration of the official story behind the Magnitsky Act but there is a U-turn in the investigation at about 45 minutes when Nekrasov starts to look into the documents in detail.

Sergei Magnitsky was lethally maltreated in Butyrka prison, but Nekrasov's investigation leads to the conclusion that William Browder and Sergei Magnitsky were the culprits to the massive fraud they claimed to have exposed.

I remain puzzled. Forged documents are ubiquitous in this story, and I choose to doubt everything.


Anonymous said...

How and where did you watch this, may I ask?

Antti Alanen said...

At Finnkino's Plevna cinema complex at the Tampere Film Festival.