Customers who bought this item also bought
Acclaimed Kazakh documentarian Sergey Dvortsevoy's first narrative feature is a gorgeous melange of tender comedy, ethnographic drama and wildlife extravaganza. Following his Russian naval service, young dreamer Asa returns to his sister's nomadic brood on the desolate Hunger Steppe to begin a hardscrabble career as a shepherd. But before he can tend a flock of his own, Asa must win the hand of the only eligible bachelorette for miles--his alluringly mysterious neighbor Tulpan. Accompanied by his girlie mag-reading sidekick Boni (and a menagerie of adorable lambs, stampeding camels, mewling kittens and mischievous children), Asa will stop at nothing to prove he is a worthy husband and herder. In the tradition of such crowd-pleasing travelogues as The Story of the Weeping Camel, Tulpan's gentle humor and stunning photography transport audiences to this singular, harshly beautiful region and its rapidly vanishing way of life.
DVD SPECIAL FEATURES INCLUDE:
- 16:9 anamorphic presentation, enhanced for widescreen televisions
- Theatrical trailer
- Interview with director Sergey Dvortsevoy, from Cinema Scope magazine
"This joyous, one-of-a-kind movie is a must for anyone who doubts that the cinema has surprises still left in store." --Scott Foundas, L.A. Weekly
If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?
Top Customer Reviews
Celebrated Kazakh documentary filmmaker Sergey Dvorsevoy won the Prix Un Certain Regard at Cannes for this, his first dramatic feature. Astonishing in its simplicity and for its intimate depiction of rural life, the film is also surprisingly funny - a simple humor that is far removed from that of the more popular but utterly false portrayal of Kazakhstan in Borat.
The performances, mostly by individuals who had never acted before, are astonishingly genuine. It's hard to believe they are playing a role, and that this is not a documentary. Even more stunning is the authenticity of the scenes. There is, obviously, no CGI here, and nothing is fake, but through patience Dvortsevoy was able to capture some surprising and exciting moments - a twister that appears suddenly in the midst of a confrontation between two characters, an angry camel mother attacking the vet who cares for her son, a sheep giving birth and a genuine performance of Asa's surprise and wonder and helplessness, all in a single take without cuts. Lovers of great films should celebrate this deceptively simple and lovely film.
I was wary that "Tulpan" might condescend to people who live pre-modern lifestyles. I was relieved that it doesn't. We see the lure of city life for people who live on the steppe, but Asa, who has experience of the modern world, just wants to be a herdsman, woo Tulpan, and gain the respect of Ondas. He's an earnest, nice guy. He seems to have attainable goals. But Tulpan's rejection throws a monkey wrench into his plans. Tulpan, the title character, plays only a small role in the film. Asa's difficulties finding a bride keep him with his sister's family a while longer, which creates conflict and opportunity for us to observe them.
While there is nothing patronizing about "Tulpan"'s treatment of these people who live a simple life in the middle of nowhere, without electricity or running water, I got the impression that the film's purpose is partly to observe their way of life. The steppe is a remarkable landscape for its flatness and dust storms. The yurts, sheep, camels, and people are striking against such barrenness. We can't help laugh at the absurdity of their situation sometimes, but it's a gentle absurdity, and "Tulpan" laughs with its characters, certainly not at them. The viewer can easily slip into their skin. In Kazakh with optional English subtitles. The only bonus feature on the Zeitgeist 2009 disc is a theatrical trailer.