Institute History


Based on true events

In the wake of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster, Malin, a Russian literature professor at the University of Havana, is separated from his family and job when he is assigned to work as a translator between Cuban doctors and children arriving from the USSR to receive medical treatment for radiation poisoning. Torn from the abstract world of academia and forced into the relentlessly real world of medicine, Malin must find ways to cope in order to stop his growing depression.

Just as he begins to adapt to his new job and understand his importance, the Berlin Wall falls and Cuba enters the deepest economic crisis the island has ever known. Malin is now so entrenched in the lives of the Chernobyl Children that he fails to notice how his young family is suffering. He must finds his way back to his wife and young child through the lessons he learns from the children in the hospital, becoming a better person on the way.


As you use our Online Archives, please understand that the information presented from Festivals, Labs, and other activities is taken directly from official publications from each year. While this information is limited and doesn't necessarily represent the full list of participants (e.g. actors and crew), it is the list given to us by the main film/play/project contact at the time, based on the space restrictions of our publications. Each entry in the Online Archives is meant as a historical record of a particular film, play, or project at the time of its involvement with Sundance Institute. For this reason, we can only amend an entry if a name is misspelled, or if the entry does not correctly reflect the original publication. If you have questions or comments, please email [email protected]