In this article, you will find Soviet Ukrainian and contemporary Ukrainian series that will help you to practice your language skills and feel the aesthetics of Ukrainian cinematography.
1. Укра́дене ща́стя (1984)
The Stolen Happiness
2 episodes, 65 min
This mini-series is an adaptation of the famous Ukrainian play by Ivan Franko.
It tells the tragic love story of Mykhailo and Anna, who were separated. Mykhailo was called to join the army, and Anna’s brothers decided to marry her to a different man Mykola. The brothers also left her without a dowry.
Mykhailo, who was presumed dead, returns home and fights for his love, but neither he nor Anna will find happiness again.
Island of love is an erotic TV series that consists of 10 episodes.
Each episode is a separate story based on the plots from the Ukrainian literature from the 19th and 20th centuries: Marko Vovchok, Oleksandr Oles, Olha Kobylanska, Ivan Franko, Volodymyr Vynnychenko, and others.
It’s interesting to compare A contemporary erotic series with those from the 90th based on classic literature – a very intriguing combination.
Roksolana is a Ukrainian TV series that consists of 3 parts. It was shot in 1996 to 2003. For Ukrainians, this series provokes nostalgic feelings from the 90s to the beginning of the 2000s since it was trendy then.
The plot is based on the story Roksolana by Osyp Nazaruk, which tells about the life of a woman named Anastasia who was enslaved by Tatars, sold to Sultan Suleiman’s harem, and eventually became his only wife and ruled the Ottoman Empire together with him.
Anastasia was born in the territory of nowadays Ukraine (Ruthenia). She was one of the most influential women of the 16 century.
You can watch two parts of the series on this YouTube channel:
The plot is based on the history of Ukraine through the eyes of a long-lived Volyn peasant named Yakov Mekh. He had been in love with Ulyana since childhood, but despite their mutual feelings, her parents married her to a young man from a wealthy family.
Unable to change anything, Jacob leaves the village. He joins the Polish Army. In his destiny he experiences war, captivity and the loss of loved ones, but his humanity and the ability to love always stays with Yakov.
The series is based on the novel with the same title by Volodymyr Lys.
The Dzidziuk family is going to sell their old house and move to a big city. But suddenly, their dream is hindered by an unexpected discovery. In the basement in an old refrigerator, they accidentally find a frozen Misha – a relative who disappeared 23 years ago. According to official documents, Misha is the owner of this house. So now the family is forced to live with a relative who is stuck with his mind, feelings and habits in the 90s.
The main character of the series is also the famous Ukrainian singer Mykhailo Khoma (DZIDZIO).
Early Swallowsis a Ukrainian teen drama television series. The series’ storylines involve bullying, online harassment, sexual identity, and suicide.
The teen drama was responsible for a 600% increase in calls to a mental health helpline. Because of its rare and graphic content compared to other Ukrainian television series, the series has been described by BBC News as “a local surprise hit”. It has also been praised for making issues that are rarely dealt with in public in Ukraine debatable.
High school students grapple with peer pressure, bullying, social media fame, parental expectations, sexual awareness, individual freedom and heartbreak in the face of upcoming exams that will determine their future.
Sasha has nothing to worry about. She is one of the best students in school, and she has enough attention from classmates and followers alike. The election of the school president is ahead, and no one has any doubts about who win the election before the worst day of Sasha’s life happens.
This series reminds me of a British one, Skins, thatI grew up on. Also, surshyk (a combination of Ukrainian and Russian languages) in the series is amazing.
Unfortunately, you can watch the series only by using a VPN (choosing Ukraine as a location):
The series is built in the form of a saga and, through the prism of the lives of ordinary people, shows the turbulent changes of the 20th century: the First World War, the revolution, and the occupation of Soviet power.
The plot of the TV series is based on the social novella Kaidash’s Family by Ivan Nechuy-Levytskyi.
The creator of the series Nataliia Vorozhbyt introduced many modifications compared to the original novel. The events of the TV series unravel chronologically from 2005 to 2014, during the decade of independent Ukraine. The main storylines display an immutable dispute between two generations of the same family – parents and children.
The plot of the TV series is full of dramatic confrontations between all family members. The climax of the conflict took place in 2014, when the attitude to Euromaidan polarizes the family. One of Kaidash’s sons, Lavrin, expresses his patriotic opinions and becomes a volunteer fighter against Russian aggression. At the same time, another one of Kaidash’s sons, Karpo, became a supporter of Russia.
Also, there are love stories, difficulties in the village life, and misunderstandings between different generations.
Ukrainian pseudo-historical comedy action series about Cossacks. The plot tells about the Cossack adventures at the end of the 16th century, the pursuit of the Cossacks and Muscovites, and the friendship and love that develops in the story.
There are bright costumes, beautiful decorations, talented actors playing, and many interesting dialogues to learn Ukrainian from.
Unfortunately, you might need a VPN to watch this series:
Employees of the newly created police department are investigating confusing criminal cases. They are helped in this by a special computer program called Owl.
After high-profile revelations and personal revelations, there have been changes in the department that will affect many employees. The crimes that the operatives are starting to investigate have become even more frightening and now keep the whole country in fear.