The Brigade

Liivo Niglas
57 minutes


This film has been shot during three months on the Yamal Peninsula in West Siberia, where the Nenets have been herding reindeer for about a thousand years.

This tranquil, beautiful documentary follows the rhytm of life of these nomadic reindeer herders, their life and their bond with animals. For more than thousands years they lived this traditional lifestyle. Now conform the Sovjet Ideology, they have been divided into 22 brigades that together make up for the Yar-Sale sovchoz.

Times ago reindeer herders were assembled into state farm brigades. The Yar-Sale sovkhoz includes 22 brigades, each of which looks after several hundred thousand reindeer. In a year, a brigade travels thousands of kilometres. The calving time in spring, the 'ty nintch', is the busiest time of the year. The brigade has to make sure that the newborn calves keep up with the herd and the big rivers must be crossed before the ice breaks. During the polar summer, people work also at night.

Liivo Niglas
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