Bullying of the Crimean Tatar population on the peninsula began with the ﬁrst Crimean annexation by Catherine II and ended with a total deportation in 1944. While the Crimean Tatar men fought against the Nazis in the Soviet arm, the personal Stalin’s order accused them collaborating with Hitler. At ﬁrst light on May 18, Crimean Tatars were given 15 minutes to pack and then deported in the cattle wagons to the Central Asia and Siberia. Over 40% of the deportees died on the road and during the ﬁrst years of deportation from starvation and diseases.
My parents were born in deportation in Uzbekistan. They lived for more than half of their life in a foreign country with the idea that their home was in Crimea. When they got an opportunity to return to Crimea, they did it. They left their work, house, friends and started everything from scratch. It was a tough period for all Crimean Tatars, who returned to the peninsula not due to, but in spite of.
But at the end of February, 2014, Russian troops occupied Crimea. Again, it became the center of confrontation, and Crimean Tatars – hostages. Our primary task, for now, is to preserve our culture, traditions, and language. In the 21st century, instead of mass destruction of nations, new hybrid
methods of war are used, destroying nations’ individuality and depriving them of integrity. Over the last five years, the occupants have conducted numerous surgical strikes to intimidate Crimean Tatars.
Murders, kidnappings, searches, arrests occur on regular basis regards to the Crimean Tatars living in Crimea. Under the pretense of “war on terror,” occupation authorities are doing everything possible to force people to leave their Motherland. Lawlessness, the absence of justice failure to comply with international human rights make Crimea the place of “silent terror,” where no one can feel safe.
It is important for me to show the real Crimean Tatars with all the advantages and disadvantages, as the perception of them is very generalized and stereotyped even in Ukraine. Quite often people abroad don’t realize such nation even exists.
The relationship between father and son is in the center of the ﬁlm. Two generations meet: the generation of the father, who lived in deportation as a child. He had to sacriﬁce much to return to his homeland and begin his journey anew. And the generation of the son, who was born in Crimea and does not know what the Soviet Union is. On the way back home, they try to ﬁnd a common language in order not to give up on each other and continue their journey.
I want this personal story to become a bridge for understanding who Crimean Tatars are and what is happening to them now.
In 2013, he received a bachelor’s degree from the Institute of Screen Arts named after Ivan Mykolaichuk, having majored as ﬁlm and television director. In 2014, he received a master’s degree from Kyiv National Theater, Film and Television University named after I.K. Karpenko-Kary as a television director. He is a member of the European Film Academy since 2019.
2019 - HOMEWARD
2016 - WITHOUT YOU, short
2014 - LOVE YOU, short
2013 - RETURN WITH SUNRISE, short
Cast & Crew
Directed by: Nariman Aliev
Written by: Nariman Aliev, Marysia Nikitiuk
Produced by: Vladimir Yatsenko
Cinematography: Anton Fursa
Editing: Oleksandr Chorny
Production Design: Vlad Odudenko
Costume Design: Anastasiia Sutyagina
Hair & Make-up: Anastasiia Sutyagina
Sound: Serhiy Stapanskiy
Main Cast: Akmal Gurezov (Refat), Larysa Yatzenko (Galina), Akhtem Seitablayev (Mustafa), Remzi Bilyalov (Alim), Dariya Barihashvili (Olesya), Anatoliy Marempolskiy (Nazim), Viktor Zhdanov (Uncle Vasya), Veronika Lukianenko (Masha)
Visual Effects: Eugene Lekh
Nominations and Awards
- EFA Feature Film Selection 2019