One Man Dies a Million Times
Panorama | Vanguard
Audaciously transposing the true story of the establishment of the world’s largest seed bank during the almost 900-day Siege of Leningrad in WWII into a speculative dystopian near future, Jessica Oreck (Beetle Queen Conquers Tokyo) delivers a harrowing but deeply humane story of unthinkable sacrifice in the interest of the greater good. With food shortages rampant and famine taking hold due to Nazi blockades, botanists Alyssa (Alyssa Lozovskaya) and Maksim (Maksim Blinov) strive to protect the seeds and grains they’ve stowed away for future generations.
A stirring piece of science-fiction that’s lent a haunting beauty by the immaculate black-and-white cinematography of Sean Price Williams (Good Time) and eerie narration drawing from texts written during the siege (including poetry by Anna Akhmatova and Lydia Ginzburg), this is truly vital viewing at a time when self-interest rules.
Oreck "creates an intimacy with the subject that bridges the displacement of events from the 1940s to our own era, making the siege more tangible than it would be in a straightforward reenactment…" - Christopher Llewellyn Reed, Hammer to Nail