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Ukrainian movie at Locarno Film Festival

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July 12, 2012, 4:24 p.m. | None — by Daryna Shevchenko

Ukrainian film director Myroslav Slaboshpytskyi
© Ganna Bernyk

It's the second time that Ukraine has made it to the lineup of international Locarno Film Festival in Switzerland.

A short 23-minute film about life in the Chornobyl exclusion zone “Nuclear Waste,” by Ukrainian director Myroslav Slaboshpytskyi, is among those to be presented at Locarno's Piazza Grande, the world's biggest outdoor cinema. The last time a Ukrainian film was shown as a part of the Locarno competition program was in August 2011, although the movie was only partially Ukrainian, made in cooperation with Russian and German filmmakers.

“Unfortunately Ukraine is a rare guest at such festivals,” says Slaboshpytskyi. “This film festival in Locarno is one of the world's most prestigious ones after Berlin's, Cannes and Venice's festivals.”

Slaboshpytskyi's movie will be shown as a part of Concorso Internationale shorts competition.

The film depicts the life and love of a man and a woman in the exclusion zone around the Chornobyl nuclear power plant, which exploded in 1986 and spewed radiation detected for hundreds of miles. The action takes place in a laundry plant, where one of the main characters works. The laundry washes radioactive clothes of temporary workers who work in the exclusive zone, the 30-kilometer radius around the closed nuclear power plant that remains highly radioactive.

According to Slaboshpytskyi, the movie depicts Chornobyl's beauty in destruction. “Nuclear waste – are definitely people,” Slaboshpytskyi explains the name of the movie. “In some way we all are radioactive waste,” he says.

Kyiv Post staff writer Daryna Shevchenko can be reached at shevchenko@kyivpost.com

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