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I AM NOT ALONE (2019, ARM)

Armenia is one of those countries from which news rarely comes. For example, I completely missed the fact that in 2018, one of those “velvet”, peaceful revolutions took place there, which replaced the corrupt and thieving government, which, I guess, will have taken place in all the countries of the Eastern Bloc. That’s why this activist documentary brings us the story of the Armenian revolution in the spring of 2018 and how it all started and how one man’s protest walk across the country eventually turned into a real event of the people. Since the socio-political situation in this country, which is located at the transition from Europe to Asia, is completely unknown to me, I didn’t even know who this walker named Nikol Pashinyan was at first.

Maybe it wasn’t bad that I was completely unfamiliar with the situation there and I couldn’t guess how it would all end, but in the beginning we get to know Pashinyan as a rebellious, uncompromising, idealistic journalist and activist who turned into an opposition politician. His mission and the mission of his supporters was to topple the controversial Prime Minister Serzh Sargsyan and his Armenian counterpart HDZ, i.e. the Republican Party, who changed the country’s constitution so that he could remain in power for a third term. Pashinyan’s protest walk across the country, which was aimed at reaching the capital Yerevan days before giving Sargsyan another term, did not initially look like something that could lead to the overthrow of the government.

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In the first days, only a few hundred protesters gathered in Yerevan and it seemed that the story was over. However, in a short period of time, Pashinyan managed to get people out into the streets, and the citizens’ reaction was mostly influenced by the repression of the authorities and the fact that the authorities decided to use force without thinking, just like in the failed revolution of 2008 when more people died. And although it is clear from the beginning that the film made by the American filmmaker of Armenian origin Garin Hovannisian does not try to be objective, but it is obvious that he also supports the removal of the corrupt and thieving government, “I Am Not Alone” was a documentary that shows that revolution is still possible today and that the government has no chance against the will of the citizens.

What happened after the revolution changed the government in Armenia is also completely unknown to me, but it is completely clear what kind of team it was that angry and dissatisfied citizens decided to overthrow. It is enough to type the name of former Prime Minister Sargsyan into Google and the first thing that is offered is Net Worth, i.e. how rich the gentleman in question is. It is a film that brilliantly follows the whole story of those turbulent days, and the interlocutors include all sides of the political spectrum, although it is obvious that Pashinyan is the main “star”. This man, who at the time when all this is happening, is not even 43 years old, but looks like he is at least 60, is obviously a good asset and this is a great example of how revolutions and protests are conducted today.

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When a person sees these protests of ours, where scumbags and complete lunatics usually gather, and where no normal person wants to attend because I wouldn’t let the team leading it watch the sheep for an hour or two, he simply has to be envious of this Armenian story. When a person sees our opposition, which is completely incompetent and lost, and they themselves do not understand whether to protest or enjoy the comfort offered by the current situation, they must also be disgusted, because in this film we see people who are ready to be beaten by the police, to finish in prison, but they don’t want to give up or falter. Perhaps for the reason that I do not lose my good opinion of those people who led this revolution, I did not want to check at all what the socio-political situation is today in Armenia, but one simply has to be happy when he sees that there are still examples that something like this is possible and that when people come together they can overthrow a corrupt government.

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