A recently released minute-long music video promoting an upcoming movie in Kyrgyzstan has provoked a swell of indignation about a perceived surge of impropriety among young women. The controversy is but the latest episode in a simmering public debate over conservative and progressive values.
In the clip – a musical promo intended to generate chatter ahead of the release of “Albarsty,” a horror movie hitting the big screen on June 1 – three young women sing in sultry anticipation of being visited by a bogeyman, the Albarsty, the title character of the movie. While the movie is serious and dramatic in tone, the creators of the promo teaser opted for something more light-hearted.
According to Kyrgyz storytelling tradition, Albarsty, a mysterious and malevolent being, comes a-visiting while victims are sleeping, and strangles them.
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Nurjamal Djanibekova is a reporter based in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.