A look at the fragility of our roots, the impermanence of our cultures, and the transience of our freedoms through the lens of a traveling VHS camera in the late 1990s. Hindsight offers a visual meditation on the memories of two young Ukrainians emerging from the fall of the Iron Curtain.

  • Max Rykov
  • Max Rykov
  • Anna Rykova
  • Igor Rykov
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Experimental
  • Runtime:
    18 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    October 6, 2023
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
    Cambodia, Cuba, France, India, Thailand, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Viet Nam
  • Language:
    English, Russian, Ukrainian
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Max Rykov

Max has a background in video and multimedia production. He graduated from Florida State University with a BS in Digital Media Production and worked with world renowned digital artists as Head Video Producer at Artechouse, where his work was featured by United Nations Foundation, Pantone Color Institute, Forbes, New York Times, and other platforms. Since the start of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, he has refocused on impact driven storytelling. He went on to produce two independent documentaries in Poland focusing on displaced people of Ukraine, where he is originally from.

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Director Statement

This essay film is built of VHS material shot by my parents that was digitized on my most recent trip home to Kyiv before the war. Since then, due to martial law, I am not able to travel home freely. My parents, on the other hand, did not have the opportunity to travel outside of the Soviet Union until their 20s. Following the collapse of the USSR, they took advantage of newly opened borders to explore the wider world. Hindsight takes the viewer on a journey from Ukraine’s post communist heartland, through Vietnam, Cambodia, India, and westward to the post revolutionary Republic of Cuba. In the process, Hindsight explores rugged hill tribes, stateless floating villages and even the monastic traditions of Thailand through the lens of Ukrainian emigrants.

Hindsight delves into the elusive nature of roots and cultural values – what they meant then and what they mean now. Set against the backdrop of Kyiv, my birthplace, the film prompts contemplation on identity, belonging, and the intangible threads that bind humanity across generations and geographical boundaries.