category Agents of Change




Romanian, English


Marx Film




If Russia could choose, it would have plenty of choice. Alexei Navalny, a 38-year old lawyer turned anti-corruption activist, is Putin’s most feared opponent. Charismatic and energetic, he is able to convene mass protests – a quality for which the Moscow regime ‘repayed’ him with an embezzlement charge. Ilya Yashin, a young and ambitious politician, is more of an inside opponent of Putin: his girlfriend, a famous TV anchor, comes from a family that is close to the regime and is often referred to as "Putin’s goddaughter". Supporting roles in this documentary are also given to Pussy Riot, right-wing extremists, and the diverse group of people who participated in the mass protests surrounding Putin’s re-election in 2012. The film started out as a web series by director of photography Pavel Kostomarov, journalist Alexey Pivovarov and theater writer-director Alexandr Rastorguev, whcih was abruptly halted by the intervention of security forces in the home of Pavel Kostomarov. The final edit mixes a vérité political thriller with propaganda images from the Russia Today television station and the very human story of the main protagonists.

The documentary has been "adopted" by ActiveWatch.


2015 - Guild of Historians of Cinema and Film Critics, Russia, Best Documentary

2014 - Tbilisi International Film Festival, Georgia

2014 - IDFA, Netherlands

2014 - Festival dei Popoli, Italy

2014 - DOK Leipzig, Germany

2014 - CPH:DOX, Denmark

2014 - Golden Apricot International Film Festival, Armenia

2014 - Torino Film Festival, Italy

2014 - DocLisboa, Portugal

2014 - Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, Czech Republic

2014 - Cinéma du Réel, France