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"Beyond the steppes" tells the story of a woman's forced journey to the steppes of Central Asia. Nina, a young Polish woman, is deported with her baby by the Soviet Army in 1940, to the deep hostile lands of the USSR. She has to work in a sovkhoz under the control of the Russian political police. When her child becomes ill, she leaves on a search to find medications with a group of Kazakh nomads. The film draws the intimate and personal experience of this woman, as she's forced into exile, struggling against the extreme conditions of this inhuman land.Written by
It depicts the fate of a young Polish woman who gets picked up by Soviet police and is whisked away to a forced labor camp in Soviet Russia. Even worse - she is the mother of a baby boy, who goes there with her.
A little history: At the very beginning of the Second World War (1939), Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia both agreed to carve up independent Poland. The Nazis invaded the western part. Many books and films have depicted the horrors of what they did there. Less known is what the Soviets did in the eastern part, which they invaded. It is a fact that many Poles were arrested and deported to the Soviet Union during this time.
This movie shows nothing military; it is not a war movie. The young woman, Nina (played by Polish actress Agnieszka Grochowska), has been scared awake by some men in the darkness of her apartment, telling her to get her things to leave. And from there, she finds herself in a dreary work camp in the middle of nowhere.
The other prisoners in the camp are also women and a few children, all from Poland. They are all doing the best they can to get by. No surprise, the treatment is harsh. The Russian men are constantly shouting at the women to work harder. Nina has an especially difficult job, since she has to care for her young boy. When he falls ill, she has to see if she can find medicine for him.
The location where this film was made was perfect. There is nothing for miles around. The prisoners are all regular people who committed no crime. They just happened to be seized and deported after their country was invaded.
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