The Putin System (2007)
CBC - The Passionate Eye
For three years, filmmakers Jean-Michel Carré and Jill Emery interviewed dozens of people to gain insight into the life and political motivations of Russia's most powerful politician, Vladimir Putin. They spoke to long-time supporters, like Putin's former schoolteacher, Vera Gurvich, to his harshest critics, like world chess champion Garry Kasparov, as well as many KGB and Kremlin insiders. What emerged is a point-of-view documentary that presents an ominous view of what Putin is willing to do to ensure Russia regains its position on the world stage.
A backroom bureaucrat in the KGB, Putin waited patiently and played by all the rules of the game in order to gain power. According to The Putin System, Putin succeeded in framing the general prosecutor, who had pried into former Russian president Boris Yeltsin's business affairs, and in 2000, Yeltsin himself named Putin as successor to the presidency.
The Putin System chronicles the remarkable life of Putin, a tough, young leader who is not afraid to make harsh decisions and holds a secret purpose-to restore the old Russia of his dreams. Since March 2000, he has orchestrated a new system: Putin turned against the oligarchy that supported him, and turned their wealth into state-run corporations designed to finance his dream of a new Soviet empire. He also re-ignited the war in Chechnya in the name of Russian sovereignty, and launched a crackdown on political opposition. In the filmmakers' view, today, the former KGB agent is more powerful than ever before, and any opponents to Putin's system are seen as the enemy.
The Putin System is directed by Jean-Michel Carré in association with Jill Emery for the French production company Les Films Grain De Sable.