Skip to main content


UK, 1985 (MIFF 1986)

Director: Ken McMullen

Ken McMullen's most ambitious film to date traces the story of one of those shadowy figures from the past through whom we seek to learn the true temper of an extraordinary time. She is Zina, Leon Trotsky's daughter, whose copious letters to her father and others form the solid basis to this imaginative interpretation of her life and Europe's troubled times between the communist revolution in the Soviet Union and the rise of fascism in Germany. When she is sent away from his island exile by the deposed revolutionary leader for psychiatric treatment in Vienna, her mental instability, born of her strange relationship with her famous father, becomes more and more a parallel for the madness of the times. Who could possibly say she was mad, faced with her circumstances and the events around her in the world? Domiziana Giordano, whose performance in Tarkovsky's NOSTALGHIA was so striking, is again a magnificent presence, while ian McKellen as the psychiatrist and Philip Madoc as Trotsky also contribute notable performances.

See also...


"In this collaboration between one of Britain's leading performance artists and a major independent film-maker, records of Performance Art have been extensively manipulated; the images slowed down ... More »

There we are, John

This interview with Derek Jarman, shot on the day of his release from hospital following a bout of pneumonia, portrays a director whose visionary power has remained unbroken. Jarman looks back on his ... More »

To Hell and Back Again in Time for Breakfast

A stylish comedy-thriller set in contemporary Paris, about a young female pickpocket-turned private-detective who becomes enmeshed in a web of political intrigue. ... "If the camembert, which smelt ... More »


A collaboration for television exploring styles of play in animals and humans. A project that combines an international jazz musician, a clown, a dancer, and a doctor of Zoology. ... More »

MsTaken Identity

Made to coincide with International Youth Year. A fast-moving video in which seven young women's groups use an engaging combination of Raps, Skits and Songs - all written and performed by the women ... More »

Mary and the Feathered Nights

Mary's brothers are determined to marry her oil. She has no intention of marrying until she is ready. Her gesture of independence begins 10 cause some problems. ... More »

Select a festival
Search The Film Archive
Browse By Director