The Frontline Club is delighted to partner with the British Ukrainian Society to present a screening of Ukrainian Sheriffs, directed by Roman Bondarchuk.
Ukrainian Sheriffs follows Viktor and Volodya, two men who have been appointed local sheriffs by the mayor in the isolated town of Stara Zburyevka, Ukraine. While dealing with petty crimes such as stolen ducks and drunken neighbours, the news about the war slowly creeps in on them through their televisions and pressure to join the army. Meanwhile, the tragicomic situations dealt with by the inexperienced ‘sheriffs’ have their roots in the prevalent unemployment, poverty and illiteracy in the region.
The filmmakers follow the adventures of Viktor and Volodya with a keen eye for the comical side of everyday situations. Driving in their yellow Lada flying its own little Ukrainian flag, they travel from incident to incident – calming an angry neighbour, investigating the discovery of a body, struggling to unfold a stroller and attempting to re-integrate the community’s freeloaders. The seasons pass until political developments reach the village by way of the TV screen, sowing separatist discord. Around the time of the celebrations for the country’s 70th Independence Day, the men of the village are drafted into the army.
Ukrainian Sheriffs offers a lighthearted yet telling look beyond the war and inside everyday life in small town Ukraine.
Ukrainian Sheriffs received the 2015 IDFA (International Documentary Festival Amsterdam) Special Jury Award.
Directed by: Roman Bondarchuk