20 DAYS IN MARIUPOL Review: Thoughtful and Provocative

Mstyslav Chernov directed the documentary, covering the first 20 days after Russian invaded Ukraine.

20 DAYS IN MARIUPOL Review:  Thoughtful and Provocative

There are movies that are made for fun and then there are movies that need to be seen by audiences far and wide. 20 Days in Mariupol falls under the latter.

The documentary follows director Mstyslav Chernov and his team in the city of Mariupol, Ukraine, after Russia invaded early last year, covering the experiences of everyday people. Homes are being shelled, people are being killed, people are having their families torn apart. They plead to have Vladimir Putin do something about this.

Chernov tells their story in a film that is thoughtful and provocative, perfectly capturing the wickedness and atrocities committed against the people in the Ukraine. The sad part is that this is only a taste of what people at home are seeing. God only knows what else has gone on before, during and after the events of this film.

It's impossible to look away from the tragedy that has occurred and it seems to be a call to action for those that are in a position to help the Ukrainian people. It seems to be a testament to the lack of care that a nation has given to their people, who are truly suffering.

It brings a tear to one's eye knowing that things like this happen and there seems to be no hope. Media can be a very divisive tool but, in this case, it is needed to get the word out of what daily life looks like for these people. The landscape looks like something out of Vietnam and dresses the mise-en-scene in a sinister and frightening tone.

Chernov bravely documents children being killed, people being tortured in what looks like his own version of Schindler's List. Making it a documentary only makes it more hard-hitting.

Whether we like it or not, the truth will always be revealed.

The film opens Friday, July 14, in New York, and will open July 21 in Los Angeles and San Francisco, with a national rollout in select cities to follow, via PBS Distribution. Visit the official site for more information.

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DocumentaryMstyslav ChernovRussiaUkraine

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