09 20 Oct '24
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Maryna Vroda


Edition 2023
117' - 2023 - Drama - Dialogue: Ukrainian, Russian
Director: Maryna Vroda Composer: Anton Baibakov With: Oleksandr Maksiakov, Nina Antonova, Oleg Primogenov
Even though this Ukrainian film does not directly deal with the current war, it still has something to say about it. Lauded in Locarno, Stepne is a staggering debut by Maryna Vroda.
A village in Ukraine, near the Russian border. The only thing that slightly disturbs the peace there is the occasional death of an elderly person. That is also why Anatoly returns there: to take care of his dying mother. The third important character in Stepne is the landscape. Maryna Vroda won the Palme d'Or for best short film at Cannes in 2011 and now finally has her first feature film out, immediately winning the award for best director at Locarno. Vroda combines the story of mother and son with gripping, harrowing, seemingly documentary slices of life of the villagers. Tales about life in the Soviet era with an underlying idea: shared sorrow is half sorrow. Stepne is a strong piece of slow cinema, wistful and incantatory, about how we need to dissect the past to understand the present.
“Maryna Vroda’s richly lensed feature debut is a melancholic look at a dying part of north-eastern Ukraine that’s seemingly untouched by the present war, and while the narrative holds interest thanks especially to the protagonist, it’s the documentary-like scenes that are the film’s heart.” - The Verdict

Image gallery

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Maryna Vroda


Anton Baibakov


Oleksandr Maksiakov, Nina Antonova, Oleg Primogenov


Maryna Vroda, Kirill Shuvalov

Director of Photography

Andrii Lysetskyi


Marek Šulik, Maryna Vroda, Franziska Wenzel


Maryna Vroda

Production studios


More information


Ukrainian, Russian

Countries of production

Poland, Slovak Republic, Germany, Ukraine




Maryna Vroda
Family Portrait (short, 2006), The Rain (short, 2007), The Oath (short, 2008), Cross (short, 2011), Snails (short, 2014), Penguin (2015), Stepne (2023)

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