Checkmate - Strategy of a Revolution2003, 60’
Produced by: Looks Medienproduktionen, Parallel 40
With the support of: ORF/3sat, ZDF/ARTE
World Premiere: International Documentary Filmfestival Amsterdam (in Competition)
How do you trigger a revolution? “Checkmate” reveals how and why the United States was involved in the Romanian Revolution.
When Ceausescu refused to accept the reforms sweeping Eastern Europe in 1989, the ruthless Romanian dictator rushed headlong into his own destruction. As the last of the hard-liners in the Warsaw Pact, only Ceausescu stood in the way of Europe’s reunification…. Upon the backdrop of one of the most exciting episodes of history, an intricate web of international political strategies unfolds. The Romanian revolution of 1989 seemed spontaneous. But, as this investigative documentary shows, history is not that simple.
For the first time, the events in Romania are put in an international context, revealing surprising connections. It was an international chess game – a game of power with far-reaching results... both for Europe and the USA. Filmmaker Susanne Brandstaetter clarifies the larger issues on the political world stage, but also proves that revolutions, no matter how well prepared, never take place without innocent victims. A painful conclusion.
Festivals and Exhibitions:
Winner Romy Academy Prize
IDFA International Documentary Filmfestival Amsterdam
Movie Eye, Russia
Evangelische Medienakadamie, Berlin