(2006, Kazakhstan, 83 mins.)
Part of CREEES's Central Asia Film Series
Introduction and commentary by Alma Kunanbaeva, Dept. of Anthropology, Stanford
Language: Kazakh with English subtitles
Studio Kazakfilm (2006). Produced and directed by Damir Manabai (b. 1946).
This film explores the enmity between two Turkic tribes, the Jaumit and the Adai, who occupied the land of Mangistau (now in western Kazakhstan) in the 18th century. The story relates what ends can come of blind fury and thirst for revenge. Children of opposing tribes -- the Montagues and Capulets of the steppe -- fall in love. After a secret date, Adai youth Ershora is taken prisoner by the Jaumit tribe. There, he is transformed into a Mankurt, though his family manages to rescue him. However, having found freedom, but having lost touch with reality, Ershora begina to pursue Jemal.
The film is based on the outstanding novel «Steppe ballads. Kuishi [The Dombra Player]» by Abish Kekilbaev (b. 1939) and belongs to the genre of historical drama. Film was awarded by the special jury prize "for keeping the national traditions" at the international festival "Eurasia-2006" and by the ”Golden Hero” award in 2007. Screenplay -- Smagul Elubaev. Cameramen – Murat Aliev, Bulat Suleev. Music – Adil Bestibaev. Cast: Zuhra Tasyrova, Erik Zholzhaksynov, Nijaz Abdigaparov, Aldabek Shaldaev, Hodzhadurdy Narliev, Zibagul Karina, Shamshagul Mendijarova.
Free and open to the public