Winter on Fire

Synopsis: A documentary on the unrest in Ukraine during 2013 and 2014, as student demonstrations supporting European integration grew into a violent revolution calling for the resignation of President Viktor F. Yanukovich.
Genre: Documentary
Director(s): Evgeny Afineevsky
Production: Netflix Documentary
  Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 4 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
102 min

Do something.

Do something for the revolution.

I'm filming.

This is the Ukrainian Revolution.

It's fun.

They're shooting over there!

Don't go there!

Don't go there!

They're shooting over there!

There, he fell.

I was just dragging a dead body.

I stepped in blood.

You can't surprise me with anything.

You thought it would be easy,

just go to Maidan,

hang out a little and then go back?

Not me.

I always wanted to be on the front lines.

That's it. He's dead.

There is no alternative

to the integration with the EU.

Something was promised to people,

everything was working toward this,

and then...

On November 21st,

Prime Minister Azarov said

they were not signing the agreement.

It was hard to make a decision

to stop the process

of signing the EU Free Trade Agreement.

Listen, listen, you can always scream.

We know you can scream.

It's a big step backwards,

not just a step of one generation,

but all the way back

to my grandparents in the USSR.

This outraged people,

not just because times are tough now,

but they also stole our children's future.

My friend wrote me on Facebook,

"Did you see Mustafa's call

to come to Maidan?"


I said, "Yes, I saw it".

I was working late.

I opened Facebook

and the first post I saw said

to come to Maidan.

I closed my laptop.

The next time I opened it

was a month and a half later.

Everything began here on Maidan.

First, there were about 300-400 people.

We were looking at each other and saying,

"Where are these thousands

of people that Mustafa called?"

People gradually began to come out

from the subway and public transport,

and in half an hour there were

already thousands of people.

The next day,

people woke up and went to Maidan.

Despite the rain, we were here.

I came here because several days ago,

our government crossed out

the future of Ukraine,

and the aspirations of Ukrainian youth.

I came here to defend my future,

the future of my children,

compatriots and country.

Vitali Klitschko came to Maidan when he

saw that a huge crowd was gathering there.

He brought his truck

with the banner of his political party

but people made him take it away.

In general, these were people

indifferent to politics.

Ukraine is part of Europe!

When students started to mass together,

it became clear that

something was gonna happen.

Ukraine is part of Europe!

Ukraine is part of Europe!

What energy there was!

I have no words to express it!

Some people outside Maidan

were angry with us,

saying, "It's like a festival,

not a protest.

You are just standing,

singing songs and dancing."

We are standing here to prove

that Ukraine is a European country,

to reverse the existing political regime.

We dream of a better future.

I went to a caf,

and I sat at a table

with some of the students,

and I fell in love with these kids,

because their souls are so pure,

and they believe in Ukraine so much.

Look at the people,

how inspired they are,

not because of alcohol or drugs,

but because of togetherness.

Together, till the end!

I'm applauding for those who came out

for European integration.

People came out because

the government promised them

to make an agreement

with the European Union,

so we'll finally have steps

to live as a European country...

like a part of the civil world.


Yanukovych, sign the agreement!


This is our document!

We gathered in Maidan,

to demand our politicians

sign the agreement with the EU!

We're waiting on tomorrow's signing.

The Maidan of 2004 started the same way.

People were standing for their rights,

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Den Tolmor

Den Tolmor is a Russian-born American film director and producer. Tolmor produced feature films, television series and documentaries. Den Tolmor is best known for directing Winter on Fire: Ukraine's Fight for Freedom, which earned him a 2016 Oscar nomination for Best Documentary Feature with Evgeny Afineevsky. In 2017 Tolmor produced Cries from Syria, a documentary on Syrian civil war. The film was narrated by Helen Mirren. It was officially selected for Sundance Film Festival and aired by HBO. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "Winter on Fire" STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 8 May 2021. <>.

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