Hopedale Mail

Taking a Look Into the Events of the Past to Shed More Light on Them

Iron Butterflies


Genre: Documentary
Year Released: 2023
Runtime: 1h 24m
Director(s): Roman Liubyi
Writer(s): Roman Liubyi, Mila Zhluktenko
Language: Ukrainian/Russian/English/Dutch w/English subtitles
Where To Watch: Premiering at the 2023 Sundance Film Festival. Screen this and more here Sundance Film Festival

RAVING REVIEW: IRON BUTTERFLIES is a powerful film that delves into the tragic events of the summer of 2014, when a passenger plane was shot down over Eastern Ukraine, resulting in the loss of 298 lives. The film comprehensively examines this significant historical event through visual materials, personal accounts, and expert opinions. Director Roman Liubyi has done an outstanding job piecing together a multi-layered narrative that investigates the incident and the political ramifications.

One of the most striking aspects of the film is how it conveys the gravity of the situation. The film does not shy away from the brutal reality of the incident and presents the facts with a sober and unbiased perspective. The film also delves into the political motivations behind the attack and the subsequent cover-up, providing a unique and insightful perspective on the matter.

The film excels in humanizing the victims and their families. Featuring interviews with family members of the victims and weaving their stories into the film, it manages to bring a personal and emotional aspect to the level. This makes the film not only informative but also profoundly moving.

The film sheds light on the political climate of the time, providing a deeper understanding of the situation. It does an excellent job of presenting the different sides of the story while not taking a biased approach. This makes the film not only informative but also balanced and fair.

However, the film has its challenges. The artistic choices are included more for aesthetics rather than serving a purpose. While the creative elements are well executed, they sometimes feel like a distraction and take away from the film's overall impact.

In conclusion, IRON BUTTERFLIES is a film that raises important questions and presents valuable information. The film is both thought-provoking and informative, comprehensively examining a significant event in recent history. This film is a must-watch for anyone who wants to understand the events of the summer of 2014 in Eastern Ukraine and its aftermath.

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[photo courtesy of BABYLON’13, TRIMAFILM]