Director Elnura Osmonalieva

Shot in the stark wilderness of rural Kyrgyzstan, this film follows a young woman who loves to play with the boys but finds herself traveling down the traditional arranged marriage path.


What makes you want to tell tales about the country where you were born?

I think Kyrgyzstan is a very interesting country because of its contradictions. It’s very beautiful but poor, it has so much potential but is not growing, has very strong women and men but there is gender inequality.

Did you come from a place like this, or more of a bigger city? Are these smaller places respected in the Kyrgyz culture, or considered too traditional?

I spent five years living in a small rural place. Unfortunately, they are considered as traditional and backward.

Is arranged marriage still a common practice in the country?

Yes and no. When it happens it is considered normal. It is also very standard for people to choose their spouses without their parents or elderly.

Are these traditions slowly dying away? Is that a good thing or bad thing?

The traditions are not dying away. Unfortunately, the tradition that IS dying away is to take responsibility for starting a family. The divorce rates are high.

How are women treated in traditional Kyrgystan?

It all depends on each woman’s individual strategy. It is possibly for a woman in Kyrgyzstan to be highly successful. We had a female president recently. However, the level of violence against women is high and women can be abducted for marriage, although it is illegal.

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