The Horse Thieves. Roads of Time

Japan, Kazakhstan201984 minKazakh with English SubtitlesCanadian PremiereDrama, Open Captions, Women Filmmakers

A cowardly horse robbery ends in murder, leaving a boy fatherless and his family in disarray. When the boy’s mother is forced to move the family out of their village, a mysterious man arrives who might be able to help restore order. What may appear to us as a “Western,” with its familiar framing of vast vistas and sublime steppes, is really a story about fractured families and survival in the wake of violence.

Inspired by true events, co-directors Yerlan Nurmukhambetov and Lisa Takeba join forces for a landmark Kazakhstan/Japan co-production, starring decorated actors Samal Yeslyamova and Mirai Moriyama. These disparate yet collaborative elements are able to make something familiar but fresh, an Asian “Western”, an art film that builds to a satisfying genre conclusion and culminates with an epilogue of renowned Kazakh artist Gali Myrzashev paintings. The Horse Thieves is an atmospheric treat. Watch it full-screen, volume up.

- Aram Siu Wai Collier


Samal Yeslyamova
Madi Minaidarov
Mirai Moriyama
Dulyga Akmolda


Busan International Film Festival, 2019
Tokyo International Film Festival, 2019
Hong Kong International Film Festival, 2020

Director Bio

Yerlan Nurmukhambetov, Lisa Takeba

Lisa Takeba is a Japanese film director and screenwriter known for Haruko’s Paranormal Laboratory (2015) and The Pinkie (2014). Yerlan Nurmukhambetov is a director and writer known for Walnut Tree (2015) and The First Rains of Spring (2011).

12 Nov, 2020 10:00 am

to 19 Nov, 2020 11:59 pm




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Bonus content!

Ticket holders can watch Reel Asian Programmer June Kim's conversation with directors Yerlan Nurmukhambetov and Lisa Takeba on the CineSend Reel Asian portal.

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