Synopsis by Ryan Shriver
Kazakh director Nariman Turebayev sticks close to home with his tale of two friends and business colleagues as they work toward achieving their dreams, despite all obstacles, in the 2003 buddy film Malenkiye Lyudi (Little Men). Bek (Erjan Bekmuratov) and Max (Oleg Kerimov) reside in the Kazakhstan town of Almaty and make a living selling just about anything that's worth selling to people who are not necessarily in the market for their wares. Max has a flair for this smooth-talking, nearly con-man existence, but Bek is not quite as gifted, especially when it comes to women. While on the street peddling his wares, Bek catches a glimpse of a gorgeous woman in a red dress and comes to the conclusion that she is his soul mate. Enlisting the tutelage of pal Max, Bek sets about to meet and romance the woman. Meanwhile, Max's longtime dream has been to meet his grandmother in Germany. When circumstances threaten their financial well-being, Max and Bek are forced to make decisions that will affect their abilities to achieve their individual goals. Malenkiye Lyudi was selected to compete in the 2003 Locarno International Film Festival.