Cannes Film Review: ‘Homeward’

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  • Author: Alissa Simon
  • May 29,2019

Cannes Film Review: ‘Homeward’ Visually striking, but narratively undernourished, the father-and-son-bonding drama “Homeward” unfolds against the backdrop of a fraught road trip from Kyiv to Russia-annexed Crimea and marks a flawed debut from young Ukrainian helmer-writer Nariman Aliev, a Crimean Tatar. Indeed, the plight of Crimean Tatars (both historically and currently) forms an important element of the plot. While the subtle connotations surrounding which of the film’s different languages are spoken in various situations may not be understood by all viewers, the mixed feelings of love and resentment between father and son — and their pride in their Tatar heritage and homeland — come through loud and clear.

As the film opens, Kyiv college student Alim and his father Mustafa (Akhtem Seitablayev), newly arrived from Crimea, are paying a visit to one of the capital’s morgues to claim the shrapnel-pocked body of Alim’s older brother Nazim (Anatoliy Marempolskiy), one of many Ukrainian soldiers
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