Vitaly Mansky was head of the documentary department for Russia’s state TV network when the country was transitioning from the Yeltsin era into the authoritarian Putin regime. Mansky was on the scene as Putin consolidated his power and started dismantling Yeltsin’s democratic reforms to make Russia great again. In Putin’s Witnesses, the now self-exiled filmmaker reassembles his footage from 1999-2000 to riveting and frightening effect as he gets up close to the soon-to-be dictator. Screening with short ‘vibration film’ Government House, a spectral imagining of a luxury housing block in 1930s Moscow.

'[Putin's accession] all happened in closed rooms with no third person present. But Putin was head of the FSB in 1998. The head of the FSB knows everything that happens in the country. He knew the results of the secret questionnaire that had been created to find what people wanted in their next president. And, at a certain moment, he presented himself, answering all the criteria.' Vitaly Mansky, Director.

Also showing Government House