Is it possible to tell the story of a besieged city without the trace of an epic? Can one capture the state of emergency without melodramatic excess? Recounting the Siege of Leningrad in 1941-44, Sergei Loznitsa’s archival documentary Blokada (Blockade, 2006) brilliantly transcends both challenges. . . . Using a minimum of expressive tools, Loznitsa is interested in exploring the tension between the authentic and the constructed that lies in the core of documentary aesthetics.