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Russia/Soviet Union


When Kazakhstan moved its capital to Astana, a dusty village in the steppe was transformed into an ultra-modern city. As Astana celebrates its tenth anniversary, we see vignettes of life in a place that is growing at an astounding pace, a place that brings together human, cultural, and economic capital.

Cheated of Childhood. (Life; 38)

The city of St. Petersburg, Russia has become home to a generation of street children who survive by begging, informal child labor or prostitution. This segment looks at the work of the International Labor Organization, whose efforts to rescue and rehabilitate these street children is an wholly new phenomenon in Russia. c2002. 23 min.

Chechnya (Chechnya: Russia's Human Rights Nightmare.)

First segment: An update on the ongoing conflict in Russia's Chechnya with comments from Sergei Kovalev, Russia's former Commissioner of Human Rights, and Ludmilla Thorne, a human rights specialist at Freedom House. Second segment: Thomas Goltz's video diary about the village of Somashki in Chechnya and its efforts to defend itself from the Russian army's assault. Third segment: An exclusive interview with Fred Cuny, a disaster relief specialist and human rights activist who traveled to Chechnya in 1995 where he has been missing and is now presumed dead. Broadcast April 23, 1994.


This film crew was the first in the disaster zone following the meltdown of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in 1986. They shot continuously for more than three months. Portions of the film are exposed with white blotches--a radiation leakage. 53 min. 1986.--The BamZone: The Baikal-Amur Mainline Railroad in Siberia is called the longest monument to the stagnation of the Brezhnev years. Behind the marches and songs praising the project, equipment was breaking down, lives were broken and souls became calloused. 18 min. 1987.

Chernobyl: The Taste of Wormwood.

A Japanese documentary about the Chernobyl nuclear disaster which includes on-site photography of the blast site and of people and areas affected. Also included are interviews with victims, bystanders, medical personnel who treated burn victims, physicists, and politicians. 1987. 52 min. [preservation copy]

Coming Apart (Inside Gorbachev's USSR; 4).

Reveals the growing unrest of ethnic groups in the Soviet republics, where central control is being challenged with resurgence of religious movements, ethnic rivalries and demands for independence. 58 min.

Comrades (Tovarishchi).

Soviet life and culture are presented through explorations of the lives of particular people in widely differing economic, geographic, and social situations. 58 min each. 1986. Comrades: The Education of Rita. This episode details the life and studies of Rita Tikhonova, a 21-year-old Moscovite finishing her studies at a prestigious Moscow University. The program follows Rita through her final days at the Institute to her oral exams and her first teaching job. [preservation copy] Comrades: Hunter and Son.


Describes daily life in Kyrgyzstan as experienced by Peace Corps volunteers who live and work there. Areas visited include the southwestern city of Jalal-Abad in the Fergana Valley, the capital city of Sokuluk in the Tien Shan Mountains, and the town of Naryn in southeastern Kyrgyzstan. 22 min.

Diamonds in the Dark.

From a traditional village bordering the Ukraine, to the city of Bucharest, this film tells the stories of ten Romanian women who relate their personal experiences and observations living under the Communist regime and the changes that came after the fall of Ceausescu. 1999. 60 min.

Disco & Atomic War (Disko & tuumasöda)

A story about growing up in the Soviet Union; a film about our generation, who were unknowingly brought to the front line of the Cold War. Western popular culture had an incomparable role shaping Soviet children's world views in those days. Finnish television was a window to a world of dreams that the authorities could not block in any way. Though Finnish channels were banned, many households found some way to access the forbidden fruit. c2009. 80 min.
web web sites:Description from Icarus Films catalog