Pep Bonet about "Motherland": "I have seen a lot of patriotism in Crimea. I decided to call my story “Motherland”. Motherland is the word that kept on coming to us. People talked about going back to their land, of getting out of the country, which was not theirs. “Motherland” is the word that kept on appearing in people’s mouths.
“Motherland” is a love story in a form of a short documentary film, where I tried to capture a critical moment in Crimean history as the region rejoins Russia in a referendum that many countries deem illegal. It was all shot in Sevastopol in 10 days. It is really difficult for an outsider to get a clear idea in 10 days of how people feel about things. In general, people were very happy and proud to be back in Russia. I mean, of course, you cannot generalize but this is the main feeling I had in Crimea. People belonged to Russia and they wanted to be in Russia. Still, many people were concerned about the future of Crimea.
One of the things everyone agreed and was happy about was that the referendum was bloodless and it was a victory without war. Especially in a place known for its wars. Crimea has been through two very big wars: the Crimean War and WWII. So, I think it’s important that we look into these things, we look in the past. The main two characters in the film are Alexander and Daria. They believe in history and especially in learning from history. They are diggers and they search for remains of WWII soldiers in order to give them a dignified burial. In that way, they clean history. It’s a story about history and love shown through two very different characters with the same passion for history and their country, big passion and big patriotism for Crimea. People have the wrong idea of Crimea.
The media in part is responsible for that. Crimea is a peaceful place. The main concern of people is to continue to be able to have a happy life, to have peace, to have stability and to know that they belong to their land. This is very important for them. A nice story about getting back something that has always been yours. I could still feel a very big difference between the young and the old generation. The young don’t want any more monuments, they don’t need them. They don’t need so much patriotism. Young people, what they want is a bright future, they want freedom, they want opportunities, they want changes, you know. They want to be able to feel the changes. I think changes are happening in Crimea. I really hope for the better".