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GOLIATH

Adilkhan Yerzhanov | 2022 | 93 MINS
Kazakhstan/Russia
UK Premiere

Sergio Leone on the Kazakh Steppe. The Kazakh village of Karatas is terrorised by a criminal boss called Poshaev, a muscular no-neck thug. As the self-proclaimed ruler of his territory, surrounded by a group of armed, merciless killers tasked with punishing anyone who dares to question his unwritten laws, he is larger than life and as unpredictable as the weather conditions on the Kazakh steppe.

In Detail

Set in a dramatic landscape with naked mountains and open grassland, ‘Goliath’ is a modern Western with nasty cowboys and fearful locals whose options to survive are reduced to doing what they are told, or fleeing.

The humour is downsized, the characters almost as sinister as their deeds. Daniyar Alshinov, a regular in Adikhan Yerzhanov’s movies, shines in his role of as a ruthless mobster who is never far from his Kalashnikov. The film is a direct reaction to the global resurgence of autocracies and dictatorships, seen from the perspective of a small community.

Politicians, the representatives of law and order, and even clerics are painted as corrupt cowards who stand aside and let things happen out of personal interest. In some ways, it is reminiscent of the Coen brothers’ ‘No Country for Old Men’. Is revenge the answer to violence? Where does revenge lead, at a time when lawlessness is the abiding force? How does one let go and restart? Yerzhanov's 15th feature saw its world premiere in Venice 2022.

Our thanks to Jinga films for this screening

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