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Refusenik is the first retrospective documentary to chronicle the thirty-year movement to free Soviet Jews. It shows how a small grassroots effort bold enough to take on a Cold War superpower blossomed into an international human rights campaign that engaged the disempowered and world leaders alike. Told through the eyes of activists on both sides of the Iron Curtain - many of whom survived punishment in Soviet Gulag labor camps - the film is a tapestry of first-person accounts of heroism, sacrifice, and ultimately, liberation.
Much of the material used in Refusenik is unique and exclusive to this film. Interviews with key leaders in the movement are some of the first ever to be recorded. Many of the photographs and covert film footage – some of it smuggled out of the Soviet Union – have never been seen before by a large audience, and help make Refusenik a unique portrait of this amazing story.