Citizenfour - hero image

Presented by the Melbourne Cinémathèque & ACMI


Laura Poitras | U.S.A., Germany, United Kingdom | 2014 | M

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Wednesday 24 June, 2020


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The final instalment of Laura Poitras’ documentary trilogy on post-9/11 America examines the erosion of privacy as governments across the globe expand their powers to monitor and record citizens

Plays like a reality cat-and-mouse spy thriller


In an effort to responsibly disseminate information and save himself from the fate of previous whistleblowers like Chelsea Manning, NSA contractor Edward Snowden got in touch with director Laura Poitras (My Country, My CountryThe Oath) to tell his story. Set just before Snowden’s explosive allegations hit the public consciousness, Citizenfour captures Snowden, holed up in a Hong Kong hotel room uploading his discoveries to journalist Glenn Greenwald. As Snowden extrapolates on what this level of digital intrusion means for everyday citizens, Poitras’ observational approach captures Snowden’s dawning awareness that his life is no longer his own. 

Winner of the 2015 Academy Award® for Best Documentary Feature, Citizenfour remains as vital a document. With front-row access to one of the most important stories of our time, Poitras crafts a fascinating film; part documentary portrait, part masterclass in contemporary journalism.

Format: Digital
Language: English
Runtime: 114 min

Event duration

114 mins



Coarse language

How to watch

Citizenfour is available to stream on Apple TV, Google Play and YouTube.

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Learn more

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Pamela Cohn, Senses of Cinema, December 2014

Film of the week: Citizenfour
Nick Bradshaw, Sight & Sound, November 2014

Citizenfour - snowden greenwald