Bunt. Delo Litvinenko (Poisoned by Polonium: The Litvinenko File) (Rebellion: The Litvinenko Case)

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Average Rating: 3.6/5

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The filmmaker who had total access to deceased Russian dissident Alexander Litvinenko makes the inflammatory claim that Russia has fallen under the control of the Federal Security Service (FSS) -- a natural successor to the KGB -- in this documentary designed explicitly to indict the actions of Russian president Vladimir Putin. From claiming that free speech in contemporary Russia is being silenced by the government to implicating the FSS in the 1999 apartment-complex bombing attributed to Chechen terrorists, director Andrei Nekrasov pulls no punches in tracing corruption within the Russian government to the highest office. In the months before the film's eponymous dissenter was poisoned with radioactive polonium-210, he had grown frustrated with the broken system and, along with some key members of the FSS, began to speak out. Later, after Litvinenko held a press conference condemning the Russian Secret Service and subsequently fell ill, Nekrasov conducted a series of interviews with the outspoken opponent of Putin's government. In an era when money laundering, mysterious deaths, and harassment of dissenting voices have become troublingly commonplace on Russian soil, Nekrasov launches a no-holds-barred attack on the president he holds accountable for creating a chilling climate of fear and oppression. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi

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Critic Reviews for Bunt. Delo Litvinenko (Poisoned by Polonium: The Litvinenko File) (Rebellion: The Litvinenko Case)

All Critics (11) | Top Critics (8)

... no crackerjack action flick but rather a dizzying, unfocused and, frankly, dull assemblage of revelations and denials.

Jun 20, 2008 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

Who needs paranoid thrillers when we have Russia's deathless gift for autocracy as plot material?

Jun 19, 2008

The film, instead of confining itself to who Litvinenko was and how he came to be killed, wanders off into too many tangents and mentions too many cases. The epic corruption of today's Russia is far too widespread to fit into a single film.

Mar 21, 2008 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

A film that does an injustice to the whole chaotic situation in Eastern Europe by making it seem not just impossible, but impenetrable.

Mar 20, 2008 | Rating: C+
AV Club
Top Critic

Although a first-rate investigative documentary on its own, Andrei Nekrasov's Poisoned by Polonium also serves as a sequel to 2004's Disbelief.

Mar 20, 2008 | Rating: 4/4
Top Critic

A muckraking documentary of vast shuddery intrigue, makes a disquieting case that Russia hasn't just slipped back to its old oligarchic ways -- but that, in fact, it's a more repressive, corroded place than it was in the age of the Soviet Union.

Mar 19, 2008 | Rating: B+ | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Bunt. Delo Litvinenko (Poisoned by Polonium: The Litvinenko File) (Rebellion: The Litvinenko Case)


"Poisoned by Polonium: The Litvinenko File" is an eye-opening documentary that starts with the poisoning of Alexander Litvinenko, a former FSB agent who blew the whistle on corruption and violence in the FSB and moved to London for political asylum. Documentarian Andrei Nekrasov is in a unique position to comment on the case as he had previously befriended Litvinenko and had interviewed him on film on more than one occasion, giving an inside look at the power structure of Russia. Aside from this testimony, there is a string of circumstantial evidence linking a disturbing chain of events starting with the bombing of an apartment building in Moscow in 1999 that killed over 100 people and where the bodies of two FSB officers were found. The powers that be used this as a rationale for the murderous invasion of Chechnya and a subsequential crackdown on dissent that included the murder of journalists including Anna Politkovskaya. So while Russia has the democratic facade that make it and its former president Vladimir Putin attractive to western leaders, the reality could not be more different. In other words, new boss, same as the old boss.

Walter M.
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

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