38th Istanbul Film Festival
Director: Vitaly Mansky
Latvia, Switzerland, Czech Republic, 2018, 102’, color
Russian with Turkish, English subtitle
The events of the film begin on December 31, 1999 when Russia was acquainted with its new President Vladimir Putin, as Boris Yeltsin announced that he was stepping down. The film is based on unique and strictly documentary testimonies of the true causes and consequences of “Operation Successor”. The protagonists of the film are Mikhail Gorbachev, Boris Yeltsin, Vladimir Putin, and the Russian nation, as always being a silent witness of its own destiny. Made by one of Russia’s most renowned documentary-makers, Vitaly Mansky, Putin’s Witnesses tells the story of how Putin rose to power and is holding his position for nearly two decades, by providing first-hand footage he shot near Putin and Yeltsin, on that fateful night.