The Island Within


2020, 1h 19m, Azerbaijan, France
Director: Ru Hasanov
Cast: Orkhan Ata, Vidadi Hasanov, Rafig Azimov
Genre: Drama

Seymour Tahirbekov is an international chess grandmaster from Azerbaijan. Having won the Candidates Tournament, Seymour earns the right to challenge the defending world champion Skroten Gudmonson in the World Chess Championship match. With a few weeks left before the championship match, Seymour’s psychological and emotional state deteriorates under escalating abuse and pressure to succeed by any means. News of his grandfather’s death is the straw that breaks the camel’s back, and Seymour runs away. Anticipating an international scandal, his father Khanlar turns to the National Security Department for help in finding his son. In the meantime, Seymour arrives on an island of Kür Dili that his grandfather had once told him about. On the island, inhabited mostly by feral horses and cows, he encounters its only human resident – an old man. Distant and skeptical of each other at first, the two loners gradually warm up to each other forming an unlikely bonding. Seymour takes control of his freedom, however time keeps running out: the World Chess Championship match is just around the corner, as is the National Security Department… Canadian Premiere, CEFF 2021.

All films at CEFF are presented in their original language with English subtitles. 

In-Cinema: Sun Nov 7 at 3:30 PM (Globe Cinema 2) 
Stream: Nov 6-14 across Canada