The acclaimed Ukrainian director discusses his latest drama A Gentle Creature, the Ukraine-Russia conflict, and the ‘hell’ of Russian history

Sergei Loznitsa is enjoying a rare day off, ahead of the last day of shooting of his new feature, about the war between Ukraine and Russia. His hotel room in the provincial town of Krivoy Rog is decorated wall to wall with pictures, storylines and notes.

Filming has been a challenge, the Ukrainian director says, not least because of Ukraine’s lousy transport network. “The roads are very bad. You never understand this when you live in Europe,” he says.

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