Profile of a Filmmaker:
Dmytro Moyseyev

Dmytro Moyseyev is a young Ukrainian filmmaker, who has just completed his first full-length feature film. He graduated from the Ivan Karpenko-Kary University for Theater, Film, and Television with the specialization in feature film directing. As a student he had previously made four short films, all of which screened at festivals. They include Hello, World! (Zdorov-buv, svite!), 2005, One (Odna), 2007 (as script-writer), The Newcomer (Prybulets), 2008, and I Have a Friend (U mene ye druh), 2009. Moyseyev is one of a limited number of directors actively working to return Ukrainian to the silver screen. He also has the singular distinction of being trained as a mathematician. Moyseyev lives and works in Kyiv. The interview was conducted in Ukrainian. >>>


The events are held on the Columbia University campus, usually in one of the lecture halls at the Department of Slavic Languages, Hamilton Hall, seventh floor. There are also off-campus lectures/presentations in other U.S. cities and in other countries. The UFCCU has held screenings at Rutgers, Ohio State, and Harvard universities, the University of Toronto as well as at non-academic venues in Philadelphia, Edmonton, Toronto, Chicago, Hartford, CT, Yonkers, NY, and other cities. The Club offers its film collection and expertise to facilitate film presentations on invitation from interested parties outside Columbia University. Inquiries should be sent to Yuri Shevchuk.

The on-campus events usually take place every third Thursday of the month at 7:30 PM during the regular academic year with Christmas and summer holiday breaks. The events are announced on this website as well as on various internet mailing lists, Brama, in the Ukrainian Weekly and at other New York City universities such as New York University, City University of New York, the New School for Social Research and, of course, Columbia.

Ukrainian Film Club @ Columbia University marks the 200th anniversary of Ukrainian national poet by screening
Taras Shevchenko, 1926
Director Petro Chardynin

This silent film is the first ever feature narrative about the Ukrainian national poet Taras Shevchenko. Newly restored and digitally re-mastered by the Dovzhenko National Film Center in Kyiv this historical drama features the brilliant Ambrosii Buchma in the lead role. The screening of Taras Shevchenko marks the return of this forgotten silent film to the world viewer after many decades of oblivion. A must-see for all lovers of silent films.
When: April 23, 2014, Wednesday, 7:30 PM
Where: 702 Hamilton Hall, Morningside Campus

Yuri Shevchuk will introduce the film and lead the discussion. Silent with piano soundtrack and English subtitles. Free and open to the public.

Tragicomedy à la Lviv

February 24, 2014, New York, N.Y.

Theatrical release poster of Credenza.

2013's Credenza (Kredens) is director Valentyn Vasianovych's second feature film in as many years. This stands in stark contrast to the recent Ukrainian trend of dragging out film production by making directors wait years to receive their funds. Previously Vasianovych had worked primarily as a documentarian (Counterclockwise, Dusk), but last fall saw the debut of his Business as Usual (Zvychaina sprava), notably one of the rare full-length all-Ukrainian movies made since independence, and a comedy no less! Thanks perhaps to some twist of fate, he managed to avoid the snags and delays in financing that plagued his previous project, and completed this film in a short three years. The script was co-written with Iya Myslytska in just 2 months.


Credenza, which is set in the western Ukrainian city of L'viv in the wintertime, tells the story of Orest, a talented cellist with the L'viv Philharmonic who, while not disappointed in his life—quite the opposite actually—runs into one snafu after another. At work, though he is clearly the defter musician, the director passes him over and selects his rival to play with the orchestra in Vienna. This is no doubt a blow to his professional life (further complicated when the dispute turns into a tussle across the stage and later a police report), but it pales in comparison to the complete dysfunction of his wife's family and his mother-in-law's deranged plan to set things right. Read >>>

A Sincere Glimpse into the Lives of Sincere Folks. Film Review of Such Beautiful People, dir. Dmytro Moyseyev, 2013.

October 18, 2013, New York, N.Y.

 

Opening shot of Such Beautiful People.

It starts, dream-like, with a pair of gigantic sea creatures (a pufferfish and a seahorse) gamboling to and fro against the Black Sea for an audience of two. After the viewer adjusts to the ethereality of the scene, the next striking thing about Dmytro Moyseyev's 2013 debut feature film, Such Beautiful People, is the delicate, sandy palette that pervades nearly every frame and helps carry the otherworldly mood from the opening scene through to the closing credits. Yet color is only part of what makes each artfully composed shot seem as though it's a painting in its own right. Director Moyseyev and cinematographer Serhii Tartyshnikov paid close attention to every arrangement of strings of dried fish, holes in screens, fluttering curtains, down to the last detail—a difficult task in a landscape where every element differs by just one shade of tan. Read >>>

BREAD. REDISCOVERED SILENT MASTERPIECE

October 7, 2013

 

Luka Liashenko as demobilized revolutionary soldier.

At the end of the 1920s, Mykola Shpykovskyi was one of the leading Soviet directors of comedies. His satires on NEP philistinism were trenchant and cutting. Like many experimental Russian directors who fell under unofficial interdiction in the Russian SSR with Stalin's rise to power, Shpykovskyi returned to Ukraine, which, thanks to the efforts of the then minister of education, Mykola Skrypnyk, was still free of ruthless censorship. Back in Odesa (he had graduated from Novorossiya University in 1917), Shpykovskyi filmed the comedy Three Rooms and a Kitchen (1928) and then a year later his most noteworthy work, Self-Seeker, at the newly built Kyiv film studio. With the proclamation of a course towards collectivization and industrialization, there was no place for pure comedies: the Bolsheviks had an acute need for ideological films based on themes prescribed by the party. Read >>>

New Films in Our Collection

September 17, 2013. Kyiv – New York

 

Such Wonderful People, directorial debut by Dmytro Moieseiev.

The last few months have been exceptionally bountiful in the new and newly restored films that expanded our already impressive collection. This became possible thanks to the growing recognition among Ukrainian filmmakers of what the Club has been doing in order to promote their works in North America and the world at large. Often the films are offered us by their directors and producers with the understanding that they will be screened at Columbia University on a mutually agreed upon occasion. All major genres are amply represented among the new acquisitions of the summer 2013: feature and documentary narratives, feature and documentary shorts, animation. Choosing from a sizeable number of offered films we have relied on the principle that only works with a recognizable Ukrainian identity will be included in the Club's collection. Exceptions are foreign movies made fully or in significant part about Ukraine-related themes. Read >>>

Ukrainian Animated Films on YouTube. Curb Your Enthusiasm

August 16, 2013, Kyiv, Ukraine

Daryna Shevchenko of the Kyiv Post writes on Aug. 15, 2013 that Ukranimafilm Animation Studio has created a YouTube channel offering Ukrainian animated films. The online collection includes more than a hundred cartoons. She further quotes Ukranimafilm representative Nataliya Nahovitsyna as saying, "We still actively sell cartoons to TV channels, but it is just stupid not to use the most convenient platform for our audience (the Internet). Besides that, our cartoons are fantastic and we sincerely want to share them with people." Read >>>

Odesa International Film Festival. Notes from the Outside

July 29, 2013. Odesa - Kyiv

Red carpet of the Odesa Film Festival.

For the first time ever, the Ukrainian Film Club of Columbia University had the chance to observe the Odesa International Film Festival (July 11-20, 2013) from within. Over the last four years, the OIFF has been growing in importance and visibility among those who take interest in the Ukrainian filmmaking scene. Conceived by Viktoria Tigipko, wife of Ukrainian oligarch Serhii Tigipko, the festival has grown thanks to generous private and government financial support. This year the Yanukovych regime earmarked some 1.5 million hryvnias  (about US $200,000) for the festival. In many important ways the OIFF is very much a reflection of the current state of Ukrainian society and culture. Read >>>

Chasing Two Hares to Come Out in Original Ukrainian Language Version

July 10, 2013, Kyiv, Ukraine

The legendary film's original sound track was found at the Mariupol Film Foundation. The official presentation of the Ukrainian version of Chasing Two Hares will take place this fall at the Kyiv festival "Molodist." Viktor Ivanov's legendary film, Chasing Two Hares, which was filmed at Kyiv's Oleksandr Dovzhenko Studio in 1961, will recover its original language - Ukrainian.  The movie's millions of admirers are used to hearing stars Oleh Borysov, Marharyta Krynytsyna, and Nonna Koperzhynska's famous one-liners and comebacks in Russian. But director Viktor Ivanov originally filmed the movie in Ukrainian. Read >>>

 
 

The Ukrainian Film Club of Columbia University (UFCCU) is a forum of Ukrainian Cinema in New York City. It is a non-for-profit educational and cultural initiative within the expanding Ukrainian Studies Program at Columbia University. It was organized in October 2004. Its events are free and open to all. Its goal is to promote knowledge of Ukrainian cinema in the world. >>>

The UFCCU collection consists of the films donated by their directors to the Club or acquired through open commercial distribution. The films are made in Ukraine or in other countries on Ukrainian subject matter. Films are in DVD format with the exception of a few on VHS. Ukrainian-made films have English subtitles. As a matter of policy the Club neither loans nor duplicates the films in its collection, most of which are unique copies with English language subtitles. Instead we gladly accept invitations to screen films at various outside venues. >>>

 
 

Typically, a UFCCU event consists of a brief introduction by Yuri Shevchuk, the founding director of UFFCU and lecturer of the Ukrainian language and culture at Columbia; a screening; and a discussion with the audience participation. Events are organized thematically, around a chosen film either made in or related to Ukraine, or around an individual director or group of filmmakers. Ideally the Club would like to screen films with the participation of their directors. We have already hosted Taras Tomenko, Serhiy Bukovsky, and Taras Tkachenko of Kyiv, Ukraine, and Andrea Odezynska of New York, NY. >>>

Parallel to film presentations and lectures, the UFCCU runs various projects aimed at promoting the knowledge of Ukrainian cinema and Ukraine in the West. Among its on-going projects are:

  • The International Translation Workshop

  • Ukraine. A View from the West

  • Ukrainian themes in Hollywood

  • Ukrainian film in an International Perspective >>>

Ukrainian Film Club of Columbia University© 2014. For more information please contact Yuri Shevchuk