Sundance 2023 Unseen Films review: Roman Liubyi’s ‘Iron Butterflies’ exposes the roots of current conflict.

IRON BUTTERFLIES

This is a look at the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur which was shot down by Russian forces over eastern Ukraine in 2014 threw news video, reconstructions, trial footage, and intercepted recordings.

This is going to be the most low-key film you will see on the never-ending Ukraine conflict. There is no narration only text that gives us context. Director Roman Liubyi is letting the words and images speak for themselves. Yes, this is almost a decade before the current mess, but it is one of the key events in the run-up to now.

Full disclosure while I liked this film a great deal, seeing the film in the middle of a festival crush resulted in it not having the effect it should have. The film’s low-key nature is what I remember not the emotional nature of the story of lives lost through stupidity, lack of caring, and the evil nature of some parts of humanity.

If you want to understand the roots of the current conflict this film is a must-see.


Screening Times

In Person

  • PREMIERE
    Jan. 22 9:15PM MST

    Egyptian Theatre

    PARK CITY

  • SECOND SCREENING
    Jan. 23 3:30PM MST

    Redstone Cinemas – 1

    PARK CITY

  • SECOND SCREENING
    Jan. 24 12:00PM MST

    Broadway Centre Cinemas – 6

    SALT LAKE CITY

  • SECOND SCREENING
    Jan. 26 9:00PM MST

    Prospector Square Theatre

    PARK CITY

  • SECOND SCREENING
    Jan. 27 3:30PM MST

    Holiday Village Cinemas – 2

    PARK CITY

Online

  • SECOND SCREENING
    Jan. 24 8:00AM MST

    Available Until Jan. 29  11:55PM MST


     

NYJFF 2023 capsule review: ‘SHTTL’ is already one of the year’s best films.

SHTTL

Written and directed by Ady Walter, SHTTL takes place in a secluded imaginary Yiddish Ukrainian village on June 21st, 1941. The audience thinks they are watching a film about small-town politics. In actuality, SHTTL highlights a real moment in history. New York Jewish Film Festival 2023 is lucky to have such an extraordinary piece of cinema to share with audiences.

Cinematographer Vladimir Ivanov captures the film in one single take. A technical wonder, SHTTL pulls a visual bait and switch made famous in The Wizard of Oz. In this instance, the use of color distinguishes the past and present. This device is emotionally consuming and undeniably dazzling.

This enormous cast gives us some of the most gut-wrenching performances of the year. Keep in my the film is entirely in Yiddish. Do not let this scare you aware! Star Moshe Lobel starred in the critically-acclaimed Off-Broadway Yiddish version of “Fiddler On The Roof.” As Mendele, Lobel carries you in his pocket in this captivating tale of religious ideology, family, love, and loss. Boasting an ending that will have your heart in your throat, SHTTL is a gem. It is a film that deserves a viewing on the loftiest screen available. This film left me breathless.


SHTTL
Ady Walter
Ukraine/France, 2022, 114 min.
Yiddish and Ukrainian with English subtitles
U.S. Premiere

Monday, January 16, 5:30pm
Tuesday, January 17, 1pm


NYJFF 2023

THE 32nd ANNUAL 
NEW YORK JEWISH FILM FESTIVAL,
 PRESENTED 
JANUARY 12-23, 2023