SEGOVIA, Spain – The screening in Spain of the film “Camino hacia la madre” (Road to Mother), directed by Akan Sataev, is communicating a portion of the history and the current situation of Kazakhstan, as well as the rise of the emerging film industry in the Central Asian nation, one of the largest countries in the world and the last territory of the former USSR to become independent.
“Road to Mother” is a film that – according to produce Svitlana Korotenko – invites reflection and shows that, once war and serious problems are over, “the crisis is in the mind” and “there’s value in the day-to-day.”
Korotenko and the film’s main actor, Altynai Nogerbek, presented on Saturday in Segovia the feature film at the 12th edition of the European Film Exhibition (Muces), which will screen 112 films through Nov. 21 in various theaters and venues around the city.
The “power and the force” of this production is rooted in maternal love, which is precisely what helped the protagonist, Ilyas, to survive and overcome numerous obstacles on his return home, Korotenko said in an interview with EFE.
The plot unfolds during a very important – but also “very complicated” – period in the history of the Kazakh people, given that it is linked to war, the post-war period and the famine that the country experienced in the 20th century.
Specifically, the film’s international credits of an Oscar nomination in the best foreign language film category and an award at the New York Eurasian Film Festival 2017 have served to acquaint the rest of the world with the country’s harsh reality, which was the last territory of the former Soviet Union to declare its independence in 1991.
Sataev’s film took a great deal of work and provided roles for up to 1,500 actors simultaneously.
The producer emphasized the international character of the work, given that it was filmed in such places as Azerbaijan and Belarus with a team from different countries who joined their efforts to create a “great (Kazakh) production.”
Meanwhile, actress Nogerbek said that the close relationship between the mother and the son in the film are “the key” in touching, generating empathy and hooking the viewer.
In addition, the film emphasizes elements that are very little known about the Kazakh reality, including the participation of “courageous” women in the war.
The role of the woman, her empowerment and strength are some of the links that, according to Noberbek, both Kazakhstan and Spain share, since during her stay in Segovia she has been able to see by their movements and their look that women there are also “impassioned with courage and bravery,” something that – in her opinion – will ensure that this film “is taken to heart by Spaniards.”
Finally, Kortenko mentioned the heydey currently being enjoyed by the film industry in Kazakhstan, a sector that – in her opinion – “is taking very rapid steps and creating top-level stars and directors” who “deserve to be known worldwide.”