Film series OFF-AFFBCN: «Kyrgyzstan and its cinema»
Kyrgyzstan’s cinematic production began with its national cinema from 1991 onwards, as before its independence, film production in this country was only distinguished from the Russian cinema based on either its language or the nationality of the film directors. For this reason, we would like to pay special attention to films made in Kyrgyzstan over the last years, particularly because every advancement made in this respect owes to the rising prosperity of this country. Produced between 2019 and 2020, the films presented demonstrate a developing capital in a search to introduce its current films whilst following the example of Aktan Arym Kubat, one of the few directors whose work has been distributed internationally since 2003.
The production of this country covers genre, rural, and urban films with the intention of transmitting its unstoppable rise in a region such as Central Asia, which is unjustly lesser known. The legacy of the Soviet cinema cannot be wiped out from one day to another, but the national awareness is seen in cinema as a privileged means of communication, a gateway through which we can understand the complexities of their social lives.
Saturday 4th of June, at 20:00h.
Running to the Sky | Kyrgyzstan | Dir: Mirlan Abdykalykov | 2019 | 88’ | VOSE | Drama
Jekshen, an exceptional 12-year-old runner lives in a beautiful mountain village in Kyrgyzstan. His parents are divorced and life with his alcoholic father is complicated. The lonely Jekshen has only the support of his school girlfriend and his father’s friends. They encourage him to take part in an important race that could change his life.
Saturday 11th of June, at 20:00h.
The Lake | Kyrgyzstan | Dir: Emil Atageldijev | 2020 | 100’ | VOSE | Drama
On the shores of Issyk-Kul Lake lives Termikul, a former history teacher who tragically lost his only daughter. Termikul believes in an ancient legend that since ancient times the people of Kyrgyzstan do not fish in this sacred lake for food, because it is believed that the souls of the ancestors are there waiting for reincarnation. However, a neighbor of his, Askhat, feeds his family by poaching in the lake. His eleven-year-old daughter, Jyldyz, insistently objects, because like the old man, she also believes in the legend and does not eat fish.
Saturday 18th of June, at 20:00h.
The Road to Eden | Kyrgyzstan | Dir: Bakyt Mukul, Dastan Zhapar Uulu | 2020 | 121’ | VOSE | Drama
A famous retired writer, Kubat Aliev, is living his last days in absolute precariousness in a society where the only thing that is increasingly valued is wealth. He is a childless widower, and his only wish is that literature will continue to illuminate the disenchanted and small nation to which he belongs. He believes he sees in his friend Sapar, a talented young writer, an heir to his legacy. However, Sapar is very ill and in need of expensive treatment. When Kubat decides to sell his apartment to save the bedridden writer’s life, he learns that his younger brother, a businessman, is being pursued by the IRS because of his debts. Kubat is torn between his desire to save the ailing writer’s life and the pressure to save his family.
Saturday 25th of June, at 20:00h.
Far Frontiers | Kyrgyzstan | Dir: Maxim Dashkin | 2020 | 82’ | VOSE | Drama
Russian military base in Kyrgyzstan. Maria, wife of the base’s deputy commander, wants to escape from that narrow world and longs for her husband to be transferred back to Russia. Meanwhile, she begins a relationship with her husband’s partner, Captain Krainov, who teaches judo to her son. The rapid development of their romance changes the lives of Maria and her family in tragic and irreversible ways.