Festivals: call for entries

"Media-K" accepts applications from filmmakers and creative groups to create socially significant content
Deadline: 18.00 - 25.10.2021

Pitching for short fiction films from Uzbekistan & Kyrgyzstan
Date: 15.09 - 15.11.2021
Place: Almaty, Kazakhstan 
Salem Short — первый питчинг короткометражного жанрового кино от Salem

New film festival "Snow Leopard - Guardian of the Mountains"
Date: 27.08.2021
Place: Kyrgyzstan 
Tuesday, 16 January 2018 00:00

Today in Vecherniy Bishkek: Margin of safety

Reserves of spiritual, intellectual and physical strength, endurance of the human body. What is this? It seems that a person has an inordinate amount of strength, the main thing is not to relax, go ahead, for if you allow yourself a little respite, lose your working spirit, you will not be able to enter quickly into the usual accelerated rhythm of life.


My compatriot Dinara Asanova for 10 years made 10 feature films and died suddenly during the shooting of the eleventh movie at the age of forty two and a half years. Zhanna Isabaeva is a well-known independent director from Kazakhstan who regularly shoots full-length feature films that participate in the most prestigious film festivals and she is still far away to fifty years old! The matriarch of the Hungarian cinema Marta Mészáros, who already 86 years (!) surprised Kyrgyz people when she arrived to Bishkek two and a half years ago for the shooting of the film, in the center of which is the permanent theme of the director: the search for truth in the relationship between the individual and society by the example of the fate of his father László Mészáros and mother of Wilma.


Marta Mészáros in Kyrgyzstan, 2014


I thought about the fate of these and other outstanding female directors, preparing to speak at the Fourth Conference "Women in Film: Content and Context" (January 13-14, 2018), which took place in the framework of the Sixteenth IFF in Dhaka (January 12-20, 2018 of the year).


After much thought, I decided to call my report "Margin of safety". Although it was possible to talk about women in the cinema of Kyrgyzstan, taking as a basis my book "The Power of Brittle and Toughness of Art" published in Russian on the June 2017. But in September, when I was discussing my future speech with the director of the festival in Dhaka, the famous film critic from Bangladesh, Ahmed Moztaba Zamal, he immediately said that it was necessary to prepare a completely new text that was not published anywhere.


Heroines of the book Women in cinema of Kyrgyzstan


"Ok," I answered. But I a long time to think. It seems that in Kyrgyzstan, the situation in this segment of the film industry is pretty good, and there is no reason to dramatize it. But I was sobered the meeting with a longtime friend from Almaty, a well-known female director who made documentaries and also teach in cinema school in Almaty (Kazakhstan) Asiya Baygozhina.


Asia Baygozhina


In December, at the Second Film Forum of Women-Directors in Bishkek, I made a presentation in which I clearly showed that in the six months that followed after the publication of the above-mentioned book, I discovered many more new names in the female direction of Kyrgyzstan. Twenty heroines were represented in my book. Summing up all the participants of the Fifth Young Cinema Forum of the CIS countries Umut, the Seventh Festival "Kyrgyzstan - Land of short movies", the final screening of the graduators of the master class Asel Zhuraeva and the Second Film Forum of Women-Directors, I counted another 30 young female directors. And these are only those whose films were selected and included into the programs of these festivals and forums, and there are also those whose films did not get on the lists of participants because of the regulated limit.


In this connection, the words of the well-known male-director and teacher Artykpai Suyundukov are recalled: "There are many girls at my course at the Kyrgyz Turkish University "Manas" who learn film-direction. And there are few boys."


I repeat, the speech of Asiya Baygozhina at the conference in the frame Second Film Forum for female directors in Kyrgyzstan, sobered me. Asiya Baygozhina just wondered: will all these named girls-directors go on further? Will they be able to produce at least one long-feature film in the foreseeable future? Or will they stay in the format of a short fiction?


The difficult way to the full-length debut of Dalmira Tilepbergenova, who was also a participant of that conference in Bishkek, graphically demonstrated all the pitfalls of seemingly very bright prospects in the desire of the girls to stay and work in the cinema as directors.


Dalmira made her full-length gaming debut "Under the Heaven" in 2015, when she was already 48 years old. For comparison, recall that Dinara Asanova made her debut in 1974 with the painting "Do not hurt the head of a woodpecker" at the age of 32 years. Over the next ten years (until her death in 1985), she shot ten films. Larisa Shepitko made her debut "The Heat" when she was 25 years in 1963. Until 1979 - the year of the car accident where she died at the age of the forty-one-year-old, her filmography included five completed feature-length films that received international recognition. It is worth noting that Dinara worked at Lenfilm studio in Leningrad (now Sankt-Petersburg), and Larissa at Mosfilm studio (Moscow), where there was a huge competition for the right to get a production.


Speech in Dhaka


I began my presentation in Dhaka by showing the portrait of Fatima Mamuralieva, who became the first Kyrgyz film-director with diploma of VGIK: in 1951 she graduated faculty for direction and, after returning to her homeland, shot chronicling and documentary films, and from 1963 started working in the dubbing shop of Kyrgyzfilm.


I finished the presentation by showing the trailer of the film-winner of the Seventh IFF "Kyrgyzstan – the land of short movies" - "Oimok" made by Kasiyet Kubanychbek kyzy.


This film is about the relationship of Hunter Aman and Golden Eagle Oymok. Casiet shot an amazingly convincing picture. She told me that she lived at the Hunter Aman’s house during three months to thoroughly study the whole routine of the man and the bird. I believe in the safety margin of Kasiyet and all our talented compatriots who have chosen the direction of their life.




Gulbara Tolomushova

10.01.2018, Dubai  Dhaka

By Russian here


Photos from this conference here