Columbia University in the City of New York

Harriman Institute

A shot from one of the Ukrainian short films that were screened.



Dispatches from the Front Lines of the Russian War against Ukraine
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The Ukrainian Film Club of Columbia University will commemorate the first anniversary of the all-out Russian war against Ukraine by a program of war shorts: Dispatches from the Front Lines of Russian War Against Ukraine. Introduced and moderated by Yuri Shevchuk.

The program includes five documentary and one feature short made on the frontlines of the current Russian-Ukrainian war: Peace and Tranquility, 2022, director Myro Klochko, Follow Me, 2022, director Lubomyr Levitsky, Liturgy of Anti-Tank Obstacles, 2022, director Dmytro Sukholytky-Sobchuk, It’s Quiet Here, 2022, directors Olena Podolianko and Novruz Khikmet, I did not Want to Make a War Film, 2022, director Nadiia Parfan, Fortress Mariupol. Orest, 2022, director Yulia Hontaruk, and feature short Mother, 2022, director Yuri Leuta. Myro Klochko uses a collage of images to create his auto-biography viewed through the lens of the war. Lubomyr Levitsky tells a breathtaking story of how a married couple fleeing Russian occupation was snatched from the jaws of death by Ukrainian drone operators. The short of Dmytro Sukholytky-Sobchuk, selected for the official competition of the Sundance International Film Festival, documents how the Ukrainians in the deep rear are affected by and respond to the war as does Nadia Parfan’s, Olena Podolianko’s, and Novruz Khikmet’s documentaries. Yuri Leuta’s staged short features the popular actress Ryma Dziubyna as a mother in the middle of a residential neighborhood razed by Russian missile strikes. Yulia Hontaruk features a portrait of Orest one of the heroic defenders of Mariupol and its citizens under the brutal Russian siege.

These films paint the picture of the Russian war and how it brutalizes peaceful Ukrainian citizens, how it destroys their country as well as how, contrary to the aggressor’s designs, the war solidifies Ukraine’s resolve to fight back and win. Each short offers a unique personal perspective of its maker or protagonist on the war, each tells a real-life story of perseverance, courage in the face of mortal danger, and even heroism.

All films are either dubbed or subtitled into English


Film Directors

Dmytro Sukholytkyy-Sobchuk is a Ukrainian author and filmmaker, who graduated from the Kyiv National I.K. Karpenko-Kary Theatre, Cinema, and Television University. Participant of the Berlinale Talents, Locarno Film Academy, he is the founder of the script platform Terrarium. His first feature, «Pamfir», was developed byTorinoFilmLab, Midpoint and Cinefondation Residence and achieve a selection at Cannes Film Festival Directors’ Fortnight in 2022. «Pamfir» has been chosen for a nomination in the category European Discovery – Prix FIPRESCI at the 35th European Film Awards.

Yuliia Hontaruk is a Ukrainian documentary and feature film director and producer, born in 1987 in Kyiv, Ukraine. 2007-2012, studied film directing at Kyiv National I. K. Karpenko-Kary Theatre, Cinema and Television University. 2013: Co-founder of the creative association “Babilon 13”, produced and directed 35 documentary shorts with more than 300 screenings worldwide. Ms. Hontaruk is a member of the Ukrainian National Cinematographers’ Union and the Ukrainian Film Academy.

Yuri Leuta Born in 1977. In 2009 he graduated from Kyiv National University of Culture and Arts (Film directing). In 2013 he graduated from University Paris Ouest Nanterre La Defense in France (Performing Arts, Master 1 – Cinema) and in 2010 from French High Film School of Audiovisual Production ESRA in Paris (Audiovisual Directing). Director of production in Trempel Films, Ukraine. Producer of such films as “Mother” (2022, short feature film), “The Cacophony of Donbass” (2018, documentary, Warsaw Film Festival, recently purchased by Telewizja Polska), short film “Son” (2016), feature film “Blue Dress” (2015, Critics’ Week at Berlin Film Festival). He also took miscellaneous roles in projects like “La mer a l’aube” of Volker Schlondorff, “Supercondriaque” of Dany Boon and “Taken 3” of Olivier Megaton. Producer assistant at Injam Production, Paris (2010‑2011).

Lubomyr Levitsky Born in 1980 in the town of Verkhovyna, Ukraine. Ukrainian film director, script-writer, and producer. His directorial debut was the trail-blazing horror “The Adit” released in 2006. He also wrote and directed such feature narrative films as “The Pawn Shop”, and “Shadows of Not Forgotten Ancestors”, both 2013, the comedy “A Selfy Party”, 2016, “Crazy Wedding 3”, 2021. His film “Captain Ukraine” slated for theatrical release in 2023 was suspended because of the Russian aggression.


Follow Me (2022) Trailer