7.3/10
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6 user 6 critic

The Fall of Otrar (1991)

Gibel Otrara (original title)
This historical epic charts political intrigue among the Kipchaks, a confederation of tribes on the steppes of central Asia, before they were overrun by Genghis Khan.

Director:

Ardak Amirkulov
Reviews
1 win. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Dokhdurbek Kydyraliyev Dokhdurbek Kydyraliyev ... Undzhu (as Dokha Kydyraliyev)
Tungyshpai Zhamankulov Tungyshpai Zhamankulov ... Kaiyrkhan (as Tungyshbai Dzhamankulov)
Bolot Beyshenaliev ... Shinvyskhan
Abdurashid Makhsudov Abdurashid Makhsudov ... Mukhamedshakh
Zaur Zekhov Zaur Zekhov ... Yalbach (as Zauirbii Zekhov)
Kasym Zhakibayev ... Dinnen Bezeyen
Sabira Atayeva Sabira Atayeva
Pyotr Morozov Pyotr Morozov
Sh. Khakimzhanov Sh. Khakimzhanov
Ali Tukhuzhev Ali Tukhuzhev ... (as A. Tukudzhev)
A. Ashikonov A. Ashikonov
Suren Khugayev Suren Khugayev ... (as S. Khugayev)
I. Arsenyev I. Arsenyev
K. Zauirbekov K. Zauirbekov
Yu. Tuyu-Tyan Yu. Tuyu-Tyan
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Storyline

This historical epic charts political intrigue among the Kipchaks, a confederation of tribes on the steppes of central Asia, before they were overrun by Genghis Khan.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | History | War

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Details

Language:

Mandarin | Kazakh | Mongolian

Release Date:

23 August 2002 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Otyrardyn kuureui See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Kazakhfilm Studios See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color
See full technical specs »

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User Reviews

 
Blows you away
8 August 2003 | by laurseneSee all my reviews

Saw this one last night. For any fans of Kurosawa/Mifune samurai epics, of late John Ford-style western epics, or of Peckinpah, it is a must-see. Amirkulov has absorbed all their lessons and more. Fall of Otrar is remarkable - I don't think I've ever seen a "historical eipc" where the cast seemed so perfectly of the time and place (although there's something inescapably modern about the way the leading roles of Ozhu (the Mifune character), Kairkhan and Genghis Khan are conceived). The photography (both the color and B&W sequences) is gorgeous, and Amirkulov displays a sure eye for how to render the Central Asian landscape visually. At 2hrs 45mins the film is not overlong - every scene scores its point and everything is so beautiful that at times you just want it to go on and on.

People have drawn parallels with the takeover of Kazakhstan and Central Asia by the Russsians and Stalin, and with the current menace to these societies from corporate globalization. Could be. It's worth noting, however, that the Kipchaks (at least as I remember my history) actually did fairly well under the Mongol federation and maintained their distinct identity longer than the movie implies.

Fall of Otrar is full of quirky humor, throwaway sequences that fit perfectly in a loopy way, and lots and lots of violence. Too many great sequences to sample here, but Kairkhan's fate at the end is not to be missed. Dialogue is florid and utterly in keeping with the visuals.

This is one of those occasions where the moviemakers went to great trouble and expense to produce something that looks and feels like primal folklore. They succeeded. Made me feel that movies have been with us, mentally, since the beginning of time, that they satisfy a craving for a certain way to tell a story about ourselves that we've always known we could do. It's wonderful to see this achieved so well.


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