TorinoFilmLab - Training, development, Funding



Dmytro Sukholytkyy-Sobchuk



Pamfir earns his living by digging wells in villages of the border area between Ukraine and Romania. His wife Helena works in the local veneer factory, their son Nazar (12) goes to school. Pamfir’s family badly needs money for Nazar’s eye surgery, which is why Pamfir decides to go and work in Europe. Pamfir needs to apply for the visa, but the money he earned is not enough for the visa services. Pamfir’s younger brother Viktor lives by helping the local gang with smuggling. Viktor offers Pamfir a quick way to earn the lacking money by smuggling the bootleg cigarettes across the border without the gang, on their own. Pamfir agrees, without knowing that one needs a tremendous physical endurance to take the bootleg across the border, which the gang achieves by using steroids. The steroids have a dangerous aftermath of uncontrolled aggression. Nevertheless, Pamfir decides to do steroids too. The gang finds out about Pamfir’s business. The biggest challenge of Pamfir’s life awaits him.

project updates


Script&Pitch 2016

February 25, 2019

Selected for the 38th session at Cannes Cinéfondation.


I have grown up and lived in Bukovina, the area of Ukraine where the majority of people are leaving to the West, hoping to find a better life. I have often asked myself: what makes them leave and what happens to them when they arrive there? Over the last three years I was working mostly with documentary. I shot a documentary about people who are preparing for the carnival, in the little-known border area between Ukraine and Romania, an area which has many peculiarities and social problems. A lot was left outside the frame. I have heard a lot of stories of boys and men who are engaged in illegal business, particularly smuggling. Through the story of Pamfir, I would like to raise the question of the Ukrainian emigration and the gap between the EU and the Eastern countries. I want to tell an existential tale of a human being and his struggle, a desperate man, who in order to come to the idealized system, breaks a number of ethical norms and human laws. My aim is to create a film built on “processuality”, with minimal dialogue. It is the warmth of family relationships that interests me, but also the beauty and magnetism of nature, which is an important element of the film.


The story of a decent family man with good intentions in unfortunate circumstances.
Dmytro Sukholytkyy-Sobchuk

Film Director

production notes

original title

directed by
Dmytro Sukholytkyy-