Award Winner

Film Info

Film Year: 2022

Film Duration: 42 min

Country: Ukraine

Language: Ukrainian


Viktor Petrenko, Maria Pankova

Film Category

Best Short Documentary


On February 24, Russia attacked Ukraine. This is one of the millions of stories of Ukrainians who fled their homes. The path of heroes from the snowy peaks to the destroyed cities, wrapped in fear and love for each other to find a safe place. The main characters of this film are its authors, Viktor and Maria. The war caught them in the snowy Ukrainian Carpathians. The purpose of their expedition was to make a documentary about mountain rescuers working at the White Elephant Observatory, but the war made its own adjustments. After the mobilization was announced, most of the rescuers were sent to the front, and the main characters of the film became displaced. They join the volunteer headquarters in Yaremche, help volunteers and learn self-defense. After a while, the main characters return home to Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine. The situation in the city is deceptively calm, especially when two missiles fall near their house and hit a residential building. Through the eyes of Maria and Viktor, we see footage of the destruction of Kyiv and its outskirts – Bucha, Irpin, Borodyanka, and Horenka. On the way, they meet people who have survived the shelling and occupation. We look at abandoned houses and apartments where no one lives and probably never will. Bridges and a cemetery of burnt cars that were shelled and blown up. In them, Ukrainian civilians wanted to leave the occupied territories, but were cynically shot by Russian soldiers. Bullet holes and shrapnel serve as a reminder of the number of victims. Time passes, and Maria is forced to go abroad, because it is impossible to get used to the sound of sirens, and raising her head to the sky to see the falling missiles could potentially cost her life. Our project is a look at a war that should not have happened on the threshold of the 21st century, but did.