Mike Lerner & Maxim Pozdorovkin

  • Aired:  06/03/13
  •  | Views: 27,069

"Pussy Riot: A Punk Prayer" directors Mike Lerner and Maxim Pozdorovkin discuss Russia's anti-democratic direction under Vladimir Putin. (8:04)

>> Jon: WELCOME BACK.

MY GUEST TONIGHT PRODUCED AND

DIRECTED THE NEW HBO DOCUMENTARY

FILM, "PUSSY RIOT, A PUNK

PRAYER."

>> Jon: I BELIEVE THAT'S

FROM TAYLOR SWIFT'S NEW ALBUM.

( LAUGHTER )

THANK YOU BOTH FOR BEING HERE.

EXPLAIN JUST VERY QUICKLY THE

PARAMETERS OF WHAT PUSSY RIDE IS

IN & HOW THEY GOT IF TROUBLE IN

PUTIN'S RUSSIA.

>> THEY'RE FEMINISTS,

PERFORMANCE ARTISTS WHO TAKE ON

THE GUISE OF A PUNK ROCK BAND

AND STAGE GORILLA PERFORMANCES

IN VARIOUS LOCATIONS.

WE SAW THEM IN RED SQUARE AND

THE ONE THAT GOT HEM IN TROUBLE

WAS THE RAUCH'S BIGGEST ORTHODOX

CATHEDRAL.

>> THE HEAD OF THE RUSSIAN

CHURCH DECIDED THEY COMMITTED

THIS MASSIVE OFFENSE AGAINST THE

RELIGION ITSELF AND PUSHED FOR

THIS CASE TO BECOME A CRIMINAL

CASE.

IT ENDED UP BEING ONE OF THE

REALLY MAJOR CAESES OF THE

DECADE.

AND IT RESULTED IN PRISON

SENTENCES FOR THREE OF THE

WOMEN.

ONE OF THEM HAS SUBSEQUENTLY

BEEN RELEASED ON APPEAL BUT TWO

OF THEM ARE SERVING TWO YEARS IN

PENAL COLONIES IN RUSSIA.

BOTH HAVE YOUNG CHILDREN.

AND THE THE STORY HAS MUST HAVE

BEEN ROOMED BEYOND ANYONE'S

BELIEFS.

>> Jon: AMERICANIZED,

WESTERNIZED WORK SEE THEIR

DEMONSTRATION AS SOMETHING THAT

IS ABSOLUTELY ACCEPTED AND

ALMOST, FOR OUR AUDIENCES,

SOMEWHAT ROUTINE TO SEE THAT

TYPE OF PROTEST.

THE IDEA THAT-- AND THEY ONLY

PLAYED FOR ABOUT 40 SECONDS, YOU

SAY, IN THE CHURCH?

THAT THEY WOULD RECEIVE TWO

YEARS OF HARD LABOR IS REALLY

HARD TO FATHOM.

>> WELL, IT'S PART OF A NEW SORT

OF RETURN TO THE OLD BAD DAYS OF

ANTI-DEMOCRACY IN RUSSIA.

THE LAST SIX MONTHS SINCE

PUTIN'S RETURN TO POWER THEY'VE

INTRODUCED A NUMBER OF CLEARLY

DRAMATICALLY-- THE PUSSY RIGHTS

CASE REPRESENTS THIS RETURN NOT

QUITE TO STALINISM BUT THE

RETREAT FROM PROGRESS THAT HAD

BEEN MADE TOWARDS DEMOCRACY GLI

NEVER THINK OF RUSSIA IN THOSE

TYPES OF-- IT'S SOMETHING YOU

MIGHT IMAGINE FROM MORE OF A

THEOCRATIC STATE, THAT TIECH

PUNISHMENT FOR THAT TIECH

BEHAVIOR.

AND THEY SEEM, IF I MAY,

INCREDIBLY APPEALING.

THERE'S A PLAYFUL QUALITY TO IT

THAT I WOULD IMAGINE IF THAT'S

IMPEDED IN RUSSIA WOULD GET THE

PEOPLE UP IN ARMS BUT THAT

HASN'T BEEN THE CASE.

>> NO, I THINK THAT HASN'T BEEN

THE CASE, AND THERE HAS BEEN A

LOT OF SUPPORT FOR THEIR

PUNISHMENT.

PART OF IT IS THE LEGACY OF JUST

PUNISHING HOOLIGANISM WITH JAIL

SENTENCE AND JUDICIAL SYSTEMS

TAKE A WHILE TO ADAPT.

I THINK THE OTHER THING WAS

THERE WAS THIS MASSIVE MOVE BY

THE CHURCH TO MAKE AN EXAMPLE

OUT OF THESE WOMEN, AND SO I

THINK THAT GOT THE

FUNDAMENTALISTS UP IN ARMS WHO

HAD BEEN REPRESSED FOR SO MANY

YEARS THAT THIS SEEMED LIKE AN

OPPORTUNITY TO DO IT.

AND EVEN TWO WEEKS AGO, THEY

JUST PASSED A BLASPHEMY LAW

WHICH SOME PEOPLE ARE CALLING

THE "PUSSY RIOT LAW" MAKING WHAT

THEY DAY CRIMINAL OFFENSE.

>> Jon: WHAT I DON'T

UNDERSTAND, THE RUSSIAN ORTHODOX

CHURCH'S HISTORY OF BEING

REPRESSED IS VERY RECENT.

THIS IS NOT SOMETHING 300 YEARS

AGO WE WEREN'T ALLOWED TO TALK

ABOUT OUR RELIGION.

UNDER STALINISM THEY SUFFERED

GREATLY.

HAVE THEY FORGOTTEN THE LESSONS

OF THAT OR HAVE THEY THOUGHT,

YEAH, IT WAS WRONG TO OPPRESS US

BUT WHEN WE DO IT, IT ACTUALLY

FEELS KIND OF NICE.

>> I THINK THEY WERE THREATEN

BIDE THE FEMINISM AS WELL.

THE FEMINIST MESSAGE THE WOMEN

HAVE.

ESPECIALLY THE CHURCH BECAUSE

IT'S A PATRIARCHAL INSTITUTION.

>> Jon: RUSSIAN WOMEN ARE

TRADITIONALLY A STRONG GROUP.

THEY'RE NOT WALLFLOWERS.

>> THAT'S TRUE.

( LAUGHTER )

>> I THINK IT'S IMPORTANT TO

UNDERSTAND THIS RELATIONSHIP

BETWEEN THE CHURCH AND STATE AND

THAT'S REALLY WHAT THE PUSSY

RIOT PROTEST WAS ABOUT.

IT WASN'T AN ATTACK ON RELIGION

ITSELF BUT THE RELIGION IN MANY

WAYS HAS BECOME A SIM BOFL

EXTREME NATIONALISM IN RUSSIA

AND SOMETHING PUTIN HAS PROMOTED

AND FINDS VERY USEFUL.

THE RUSSIAN POPE SAID PUTIN'S

RETURN TO POWER OF A MIRACLE

FROM GOD AND URGED ALL

SUPPORTERS-- ALL BELIEVERS TO

VOTE FOR HIM.

>> Jon: NOW, DOES HE KNOW

THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A MIRACLE

AND JUST SLIGHT VOTING

IRREGULARITY?

HAS HE THOUGHT ABOUT THAT IN ANY

WAY?

NOW, IS THERE ANY WAYUE KNOW,

IT'S VERY DILL-- THERE ARE SOME

POLITICAL REGIMES THAT ARE

OPPRESSIVE BUT RESPONSIVE TO

OUTSIDE PRESSURE, STILL CARE

ABOUT-- IS THERE ANY WAY TO

SHAME PUTIN.

THIS IS A GUY WHO HUNTS SEALS IN

A CROSSBOY WITH NO SHIRT ON.

IS THERE ANY WAY YOU COULD SHAME

THAT GUY INTO EASING WHAT IS AN

UTTERLY RIDICULOUS DRACONIAN

PUNISHMENT?

>> OF COURSE A LOT OF MAJOR

MUSIC ARTISTS HAVE COME IN

SUPPORT OF THE PUSSY RIOT,

MADONNA AND YOKO ONO--

>> I'M SORRY, YOU SAID MAJOR?

>> I UNDERSTAND HE'S A VERY --

>> MADONNA SLAM!

( LAUGHTER )

>> BUT HE'S A BIG DIRE STRAIGHTS

FAN.

IF HE CAME OUT --

>> YOU'RE KIDDING ME.

>> AND A BIG DEEP PURPLE FAN.

>> THAT MIGHT MAKE A DIFFERENCE.

WE DON'T KNOW.

>> Jon: WHAT IS WITH THE

ECCENTRICITY OF THESE DICTATORS.

KIM JUNG UNHAS A REAL WEAKNESS

FOR THE "POLICE ACADEMY" MOVIE.

THERE IS ALWAYS SOME CRAZY

OFFSHOOT OF SOMETHING-- I MEAN,

WE SENT DENNIS RODMAN TO NORTH

KOREA, FOR GOD'S SAKES.

I'M SURE WE COULD GET NOFLER TO

DO SOMETHING.

>> MAKE IT HAPPEN.

>> Jon: FOR REAR FOR REAL?

( LAUGHTER )

>> I THINK A LOT OF TIME THE

JUDICIARY IS ANNOYED BY THE

MORALIZING OF TELL US WHAT TO

DO.

WE GET THIS QUESTION A LOT, AND

IT'S REALLY HARD TO SAY WHETHER

EYE THINK IT'S TREMENDOUSLY

IMPORTANT FOR WOMEN TO HAVE THE

SUPPORT FROM ALL OVER THE WORLD

AND FOR THEIR CAUSE BUT HOW IT

IMPACTS THE JUDICIAL PROCESS --

>> SO IT'S DIFFICULT FOR TO US

SAY, BOY, WE'D LOVE TO SUPPORT

THESE WOMEN BUT IT'S TENUOUS

BECAUSE THAT COULD ALSO BE SEEN

AS ARROGANCE FROM THE WEST AND

THE TYPES OF THINGS THAT GET US

IN TROUBLE AS WELL.

>> INITIALLY, THIS WAS

CHARACTERIZED AS WESTERN

FOUNDED, WHICH IT WASN'T.

IT WAS VERY EASY TO LABEL IT AS

SUCH.

AND I THINK THE MORE YOU PUSH

AND THE MORE-- YOU KNOW, THERE'S

A GREAT RESISTANCE TO BEING

LECTURED BY THE WEST.

>> Jon: TRUTH BE TOLD, WE

CAN BE DICKS.

( LAUGHTER )

BUT IT'S GREAT WHAT YOU GUYS ARE

DOING AND I REALLY HOPE THEIR

STORY GETS OUT AND I HOPE

THEY'RE OUT SOON.

"PUSSY RIDE" PREMIERES ON HBO,

JUNE 10.

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