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Criticism of ‘Olga’, gymnastic Ukrainian exile

Elie Grappe directs a story of self-improvement, Olympic gymnastics and exile that turns Ukraine’s Euromaidan in 2013 into the prologue of worse times.

    Elie Grappe debuts in the feature film with a story that manages to be as cold as it is personal, a reflection of its tough but vulnerable protagonist that, at the dawn of the deadly toll of the Euromaidan in Ukraine in 2013, she is sent to Switzerland to continue her life as a gymnast far from danger and, also, from her mother and friends. Anastasiia Budiashkina, a bar professional who lived a similar story, is the heroine who dedicates her life and suffering to the sport until she discovers that, far from her own, she ceases to have meaning. That pro-European citizen uprising, which ended up costing more than 80 lives, is the context of this simple but sharp chronicle on the horrors of exile, even if it is presented in the form of a rewarding sports career.

    In a macabre twist of fate, this film, released at Cannes in July 2021, has become a dark prologue to what was to come, a lucid reflection on the healing of the wound that ‘Winter on Fire’ (E Afineevsky, 2015) and now looks like a simple scratch.

    For those who doubt the obligatory union between politics and everything else

    The best: current events have turned a short story into a terrifying prologue.

    The worst: precisely that.


    Address: elie grappe Distribution: Anastasiia Budiashkina, Sabrina Rubtsova, Caterina Barloggio, Théa Brogli Country: Swiss Year: 2021 Release date: 09-16-2022 Gender: Drama Script: Raphaëlle Valbrune-Desplechin, Elie Grappe Duration: 86 min.

    Synopsis: A 15-year-old Ukrainian gymnast, exiled in Switzerland, works to secure a place at the country’s National Sports Center. When the Euromaidan riot breaks out in the country, her anxiety increases as her family becomes more involved in the conflict.

    Source: Fotogramas

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