Eponymous Zhalanash is a port city over the Aral Sea. This place between a great water and a vast desert which used to be a prosperous link of the Soviet economy is just a shadow of its former glory today.

In Marcin Sauter’s film, Zhalanash is not only about evocative landscape, but, above all, about the fates of people who invested their hopes and expectations into the place between the sea and the desert and now ponder over their solitude among the wrecks of ships and port cranes.




MARCIN SAUTER – photographer, cinematographer and film director. Born in 1971 in Bydgoszcz. A member of the Association of Polish Art Photographers, he has had several dozen individual exhibitions of photography. He teaches at Wajda School in Warsaw.

He established the foundation The Bydgoszcz Newsreel. His adventure with the cinema started in 1997 when he cooperated with Maciej Cuske on the feature film “What Do You Think About It, Gałuszko?”. Then, he continued with such documentaries as “The Travelling Cinema” (2005), “North From Calabria” (2009) and “Hakawati” (2011).



IDFA, The Netherlands, 2017 (IDFA Award for Best Short Documentary)

57. Krakow Film Festival, Poland, 2017
(The Award of the Polish Filmmakers Association)

25th Camerimage Film Festival, Poland, 2017 (Golden Frog — Grand Prix)

Budapest International Documentary Festival, Hungary, 2018 (Best Film)

TRT Documentary Awards, Turkey, 2018 (Best Documentary Award)


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Barbara Ławska

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