Tulpan

  • 100'
  • Kazakhstan
  • 2008
The documentary master Sergey Dvortsevoy is known for his unforgettable film In the Dark (2004), but his whole oeuvre of documentaries is most certainly recognisable in his first feature, a natural next step in his career. Dvortsevoy combines actors with amateur performers, uses understated humour and gives leading roles to local domestic animals. He tackles major themes based on small, apparently chance stories. In Tulpan, this is the dream of a better life for the former sailor Asa, who lives with his sister and brother-in-law as an assistant shepherd. Eager for an adult life with his own herd, he shall first have to find himself a bride. Life doesn't get any easier when Tulpan, the only nubile woman anywhere near, says his ears are too big and rejects him. He doesn't even get to see her. Dvortsevoy unfolds a warm-hearted comedy with a rough undertone. Natural laws predominate in the endless bare steppes, where people do not easily rule over the idiosyncratic nature of their herds. Dvortsevoy does not need any grand gestures. His sharp, ethnographic observations are not larded with pompous symbolism, but with liberating humour and powerful minor plot lines. All the actors are convincing with their own small worlds - worlds which come together again every evening under the yurt roof. (LC)

Director
Sergey Dvortsevoy
Countries of production
Kazakhstan, Russia, Germany, Switzerland, Poland
Production Year
2008
Festival Edition
IFFR 2009
Length
100'
Medium
35mm
Languages
English, Kazakh, Russian
Producers
Karl Baumgartner, Valerie Fischer, Gulnara Sarsenova, Sergey Melkumov
Production Companies
Pandora Film - OUD, Cobra Film AG, Eurasia Film, Film Company Slovo, CTB Film Company, Filmcontract, Pallas Film GmbH
Sales
The Match Factory GmbH
Screenplay
Sergey Dvortsevoy, Gennady Ostrovskiy
Cinematography
Jola Dylewska
Editor
Isabel Meier, Petar Markovic
Production Design
Roger Martin
Cast
Askhat Kuchinchirekov, Samal Yeslyamova
Local Distributor
EYE Film Institute Netherlands
Website
http://the-match-factory.com/films/items/tulpan.html