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My Perestroika (2011)



Average Rating: 8.2/10
Critic Reviews: 13
Fresh: 13 | Rotten: 0

No consensus yet.



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Average Rating: 3.8/5
User Ratings: 1,391

My Rating

Movie Info

International Film Circuit is proud to present US Theatrical release of MY PERESTROIKA, Robin Hessman's intimate and lovingly crafted portrait of the last generation of Soviet children brought up behind the Iron Curtain. Since premiering at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival, the film has screened at some of the world's top documentary showcases, including the Full Frame Festival (Filmmaker Award), Silverdocs (Special Jury Award), New Directors/New Films, Sheffield Doc/Fest, Rotterdam Film Festival


Documentary, Special Interest

May 15, 2012


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All Critics (25) | Top Critics (13) | Fresh (23) | Rotten (2) | DVD (1)

My Perestroika has the quality of a candid conversation with long-lost cousins from another country.

December 2, 2011 Full Review Source: Globe and Mail
Globe and Mail
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Like all of us, they are looking back on the best and most brilliant times of youth. It's a universal longing that knows no politics.

December 1, 2011 Full Review Source: Toronto Star
Toronto Star
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"My Perestroika" is specific to Russia, of course, but the juvenile certainty and conformity it chronicles seem universal.

May 13, 2011 Full Review Source: Washington Post
Washington Post
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It not only evocatively captures the Russian spirit and the yearnings of a generation, but it also masterfully chronicles the historic collapse of the Soviet Union and its complex aftermath.

April 28, 2011 Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle
San Francisco Chronicle
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The openness of these people is often astonishing -- and a sign of hope.

April 15, 2011 Full Review Source: Christian Science Monitor
Christian Science Monitor
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"My Perestroika" reminds us that no matter how repressive a government, no matter how entrenched attitudes may seem, underneath the surface there are countless individuals very much like us.

April 14, 2011 Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
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My Perestroika manages to paint a picture of a people twice-disillusioned by their political system -- a uniting thread between East and West, indeed.

December 2, 2011 Full Review Source: Jam! Movies
Jam! Movies

Russia over the last thirty years as lived by the political upheaval generation.

May 12, 2011 Full Review Source: Monsters and Critics
Monsters and Critics

A refreshing alternative to many fictional representations of large nations weathering cataclysmic changes.

April 29, 2011 Full Review Source: Film Comment Magazine
Film Comment Magazine

Engulfed in a bittersweet symphony of getting what one wants and losing what one once had, the documentary's personal conversations manifest themselves into something greater than a few Russians weighing in on current affairs

April 20, 2011 Full Review Source: UR Chicago Magazine


April 7, 2011 Full Review Source: Boston Phoenix
Boston Phoenix

a heavily compacted and yet deeply personal look at the growth of Communism from Lenin through the breakup of the Soviet Union to the election of Vladimir Putin

March 24, 2011 Full Review Source:

Strongly influenced by Michael Apted's "Up" series, this is a supremely apolitical film about some truly momentous events. With its "hip" triumphalism over the fall of the USSR, it seems a bit dated given the course of events over the past 3 years.

March 24, 2011 Full Review Source:

Bitter documentary takes the old Soviet Union to TASS.

March 23, 2011 Full Review Source: Film Journal International
Film Journal International

An engrossing look at the impact of social, political, and cultural change on five Russians from the last generation brought up behind the Iron Curtain.

March 23, 2011 Full Review Source: Spirituality and Practice
Spirituality and Practice

Audience Reviews for My Perestroika

"My Perestroika" is an insightful documentary that takes a personal approach to recent history in the Soviet Union and Russia, seen through the eyes of five former classmates, an entrepreneur, a manager, married teachers and a street musician who have all gone in different directions in their lives. Sadly, there is also a little too much emphasis on very cute kids.(I love how the kids in the old Soviet Union would read books to get information. Those same kids, now grown up, complain about the kids not reading that much nowadays.) From the black and white archival and home movies shot during the 1980's, suddenly with a few exceptions, there is color footage after Brezhnev's passing, and the new world of the Gorbachev years. Change came in rapid bursts. As one person says, it felt like he came back to an entirely different country after he got out of the army in 1986. Suddenly there were punk rockers which could only be a sign of the end.(Kidding!) Gone are the propaganda posters of the old regime, replaced by advertisements for all sorts of products from the west, now available. The only possible exception is the ad for the Putin/Medvedev campaign. Then, there are also signs of history working in a cycle, as the past might not seem so dissimilar after all. Chechnya replaces Afghanistan(neither are mentioned) while terrorism replaces nuclear drills.(While we had duck and cover here in the states, they had gas masks.) After all is said and done, the mood of the citizens, having seen everything, is cynical, not conformist.
August 15, 2010
Walter M.

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