THE DISTANT BARKING OF DOGS is set in Eastern Ukraine on the frontline of the war. The film follows the life of 10-year-old Ukrainian boy Oleg throughout a year, witnessing the gradual erosion of his innocence beneath the pressures of war. Oleg lives with his beloved grandmother, Alexandra, in the small village of Hnutove. Having no other place to go, Oleg and Alexandra stay and watch as others leave the village. Life becomes increasingly difficult with each passing day, and the war offers no end in sight. In this now half-deserted village where Oleg and Alexandra are the only true constants in each other’s lives, the film shows just how fragile, but crucial, close relationships are for survival. Through Oleg’s perspective, the film examines what it means to grow up in a war zone. It portrays how a child’s universal struggle to discover what the world is about grows interlaced with all the dangers and challenges the war presents. Thus, THE DISTANT BARKING OF DOGS unveils the consequences of war bearing down on the children in Eastern Ukraine, and by natural extension, the scars and self-taught life lessons this generation will carry with them into the future.
I don’t know what can be the best way to explain a war or armed conflict but this documentary is a great example about how to visualize it.
This piece is basically showing us it is possible to make a film about ongoing clashes without showing any close combat, still holding all the tension, being anxious, and most importantly how does it feel to be a child while hearing bombardments all day long.
That piece is not trying to abuse your emotions through children, it is a honest piece about growing up, being family, protecting each other and dealing with fear while all those bombs are barking at your backyard.
Director: Simon Lereng Wilmont
Writer: Simon Lereng Wilmont
Stars: Oleg Afanasyev, Alexandra Ryabichkina, Jarik
Country: Denmark | Sweden | Finland
Language: Russian | Ukrainian
Release Date: 23 November 2018 (Sweden)
Filming Locations: Hnutove, Ukraine
Format : Matroska
Format version : Version 4
File size : 1.37 GiB
Duration : 1 h 30 min
Overall bit rate : 2 161 kb/s