When Peter forged travel documents during Stalin’s formidable reign to see his parents in a Siberian labour camp before they perished, he knew he was facing the life-or-death challenge of his life.
What followed in the years after that journey could not have been foreseen by Peter or his countrymen. In 1941, the Ukraine was invaded by Hitler’s army and remained under its control until its retreat two years later, taking Peter and his young family with them, as workers in Germany’s labour camps where he has to draw on every ounce of his being to keep his family alive.
After years of hardship and suffering, a hand of hope is offered in the form of a ship that would take Peter and his family, now displaced persons, with no country they could claim as their own, as far away from Stalin’s Soviet Union as possible: to Australia, a land of opportunity and fairness before the law.
Based on a true story, The Man from Talalaivka, is both a political and personal story. But above all, it is a story about survival and endurance, and love: love for one’s family, love for one’s country, love for humanity.