Watch The Road to Mother
- 2 hr 11 min
The Road to Mother is a heartwarming drama directed by Akan Satayev and released in Kazakhstan in 2016. The movie follows the touching story of Ali, a journalist who embarks on a journey to reconnect with his mother, whom he has not seen in over 30 years. The film is based on a novel by a famous Kazakh writer, Dulat Isabekov, and provides a deep insight into the country's recent history and society. The movie starts with Ali traveling from Almaty to his hometown Semey, located in the northeast of Kazakhstan, near the Russian border. As he talks to his colleague, we learn that Ali's mother left him with his grandmother when he was just a child and went to work in the fields, becoming one of the thousands of forced laborers during the Soviet era. Ali, who grew up with a deep sense of abandonment, decides to track her down and make peace with her before it's too late. The entire film takes place during Ali's journey, which is marked by a series of encounters with people who help him advance towards his goal. At each stop, Ali hears stories of women who, like his mother, endured hard work, abuse, and separation from their children. He talks to hospital workers who remember the atomic bombing of Semipalatinsk, which Ali's mother witnessed, and sees the environmental damage caused by the nuclear tests in the area. He reflects on the hardships of the region's nomadic tribes, who faced similar tragedies and had to adapt to new ways of living. As Ali moves closer to his hometown, he faces a series of obstacles that test his resolve and determination. He is stopped by corrupt policemen who try to extort money from him, but he refuses to give in to their demands. He gets lost in the vast Kazakh steppes, but a kind shepherd leads him back to the road. He suffers from altitude sickness while crossing the mountains but keeps going, driven by a deep sense of purpose. Throughout the film, we see a gradual transformation in Ali, who starts as a detached journalist but becomes a more compassionate and empathetic person. He learns to appreciate the beauty and diversity of his homeland, gaining a deeper understanding of his mother's past and the struggles of her generation. He realizes that his loneliness and bitterness have prevented him from truly connecting with people, and he seeks to make amends with his past mistakes. The performances in The Road to Mother are outstanding, especially Bolat Abdilmanov as Ali, who portrays the character's emotional journey with subtlety and depth. The supporting cast, composed mostly of non-professional actors, brings authenticity and realism to the film, creating a sense of familiarity and intimacy with the audience. The cinematography is breathtaking, capturing the vastness and majesty of the Kazakh landscape, and the score, which combines traditional and modern elements, adds to the emotional impact of the story. In conclusion, The Road to Mother is a poignant and inspiring movie that tells a story of love, sacrifice, and resilience. It showcases the beauty and complexity of Kazakhstan's culture and history, and it manages to resonate with universal themes of forgiveness, redemption, and human connection. The film is a must-see for anyone interested in Central Asian cinema and a moving tribute to the generations of Kazakh women who faced unspeakable challenges and yet managed to find hope and strength in the face of adversity.