Dir. Kantemir Balagov | 118 min
Narrative Russia 2017 RussianKabardian with English subtitles Mid-Atlantic Premiere

Saturday, May 58:40 PM E Street Cinema

Tuesday, May 87:15 PM AFI Silver Theatre

In this controversial Cannes award-winner set in the small Russian town of Nalchik, a Jewish family’s ties fray when son David and his fiancé Lea are kidnapped.

First-time director Kantemir Balagov harkens back to the Russia of his youth—one shaped by the Chechen wars—aiming his camera on the family’s daughter, Ilana, a rebellious tomboy chaffing against traditional family structure. While her parents turn to the Jewish community for help, she seeks solace with her Kabardian boyfriend.

–Note adapted from the International Film Festival Rotterdam

Includes disturbing footage from the Dagestan massacre

Co-presented by Sephardic Heritage International DC (SHIN DC)


  • Best Film & Best Actress
    2017, Lisbon & Sintra Film Festival
  • Best Debut Full-Length Film
    2017, Sochi Open Russia Film Festival
  • Best Actress
    2018, Festival Premiers Plans Angers
  • Golden Anchor Award
    2017, Haifa International Film Festival


  • The grittily inspired craft darkly illuminates a story whose value lies in how authentically it mines the specificity of its arcane settingVariety
  • Darya Zhovner invests Ilana with a defiant spirit and a sense that she will not be broken no matter what happensScreendaily


Print Source

Wild Bunch
Alice Gay


This event finished on May 9, 2018.