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"The Cyborgs:" Anthemised harsh realities of Ukrainian Heroes

Author : 112.ua

11:50, 8 December 2017
"The Cyborgs:" Anthemised harsh realities of Ukrainian Heroes

Author : 112.ua

The film shows Donbas war the not from the technical side, but its human face

11:50, 8 December 2017

Read the original text at 112.ua.

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The legendary story of the defense of the Donetsk airport records the events of September 2014. A group of volunteers go on their first two-week duty to a place where fierce battles have already been taking place for four months. Protection of a strategically important object is a matter of honor for each of them. Completely different, but united by one goal, the characters are ready for everything to defend their country. The scene reveals the whole essence of what is happening - according to intelligence, the Buratino heavy flame thrower system volley fire that destroys everything within a radius of three kilometers. The commander of the battalion suggests wishing to leave the perimeter, to which all participants of the defensive operation respond with a convincing refusal, thus confirming their loud title of "cyborgs".

Related: Ukrainian movie Frost about Donbas war to participate in ArteKino Festival

Ukrainian and Crimean Tatar director Ahtem Seitablayev decided to screen the story, which definitely deserved it. The topic of ATO and the war for him is not new: earlier in the same year he published his drama about the German occupation of Crimea "Another's prayer." A long time before that, Ahtem acted as the leader of the project "Brave Hearts", dedicated to the heroism of Donbas soldiers. Actually, the idea to create a film "The Cyborgs" was born then.

Ukrainian playwright Natalia Vorozhbyt decided to help Seitablayev realize his plan, and, in fact, the "cyborgs" themselves. The fighters advised the creators of the film at all stages - from writing the script to shooting process. The state decided to join the project - half of the budget (out of a total of 1,8 million USD) was allocated by Ukraine’s State Film Agency. "This is the first feature film about a war of this magnitude, so a very important mission was entrusted, and I am proud that we supported it," said the head of Film State Committee, Pylyp Ilienko.

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Related: Paramedicine and Donbas conflict: How it works?

According to the idea of the creators, "The Cyborgs" is not a spectacular blockbuster, full of fighting scenes and expensive special effects. First of all, this is a film that focuses on what is happening on the human side, on the thoughts and souls of modern Ukrainian soldiers, reflecting their very essence.

All heroes are collective images written off from real fighters. Some of them told about themselves, others, who are no longer alive, were recreated according to the memories of their comrades. "One hundred and fifty stories probably live in me... I know these people, I did not have to create something, these people are absolutely real, I listened to them and that is how their images were born," Natalia Vorozhbyt said.

The characters really turned out to be realistic. Five key characters with whom the viewer spends almost two weeks of screen events, do not leave indifferent, forcing to live with them every moment. Like nobody else, they acutely feel the value of life, that one cannot deny their existence. Naturally, such plausibility would not have been achieved without mastering the reincarnation of the performers of the leading roles of Roman Yasynovsky, Makar Tykhomyrov, Vyacheslav Dovzhenko, Viktor Zhdanov, and Andriy Isayenko.

Related: Nicolas Jaar to perform at Dovzhenko Film Studios

The only thing you can blame the film for (although it does not feel like it) is pathos and excessive philosophical minutes of thinking. However, both these themes inevitably follow from the epic plot - it is impossible to live a war without having a powerful internal motivation, stemming from basic beliefs and outlooks on life.

Why are you here?

Why are you fighting?

Why do you love Ukraine?

How to perceive death?

What do you feel when you kill people?

These and many other questions the heroes ask each other and they look for answers together with the audience. The film raises many acute topics, viewing them from different angles. Thanks to this, the authors managed to create something unique - to reflect on the screen an intermediate, crucial moment of modern Ukraine, forming new meanings and being at a new stage of its formation.

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"We are witnessing the birth of not only the new Ukrainian nation, but also the new Ukrainian army... We tried to make an honest movie, a movie about how hard and painfully we are freed from the bowing, which appeared on the bottom of a ship. It has been ignored for decades. This is not critics, this is an attempt to talk about what hurts us," Ahtem Seitablayev said at a press conference on the occasion of the film preview in Kyiv.

In turn, Pylyp Ilienko drew attention to the fact that it is very difficult to realize the value of the film and the significance of all that is happening now: "This is a film about an unfinished war. This is a very difficult task for the artist, because there are so many questions, issues, it will be possible to evaluate it later, after some 10, 20, 30 years."

Related: Ukrainian film about downed plane with paratroopers won Warsaw FlyFilmFestival

Anyway, now we can say with confidence that "The Cyborgs" turned out to be balanced, honest, and deep film. It contains relevant poetry, but is not burdened with softening embellishments. It really reflects the horror of the war, along with its senseless ruthlessness, and the completely casual heroism of our soldiers who sincerely believe in Ukraine and are ready to die for it.

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"If such a movie appeared earlier, we would not have lose even one centimeter of our land, this film is much stronger than all the "Grads" and other  weapons," Colonel Vsevolod Steblyuk concluded after the Mariupol preview.

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