The film talks about the life and tragedy of a Kyrgyz village, focusing on a simple young guy Esen who falls in love with Begimai, the daughter of a local lord. The dishonest tricks of his rival force Esen to take revenge. His anger results in a tragedy – destruction of a sacred totem tree. Hard trials are coming for everyone. Being expelled from his native village, he takes Begimai with him, but is overtaken and beaten almost to death. Esen is destined to find himself and his fate in order to reunite his people.
Dariika, a mother of Asan and Esen, often comes to an old big tree. She feels a sacramental nature of the holy place like nobody else in the area as the tree is keeping secrets of numerous generations with care.
Dariika`s youngest son Esen is friends with Begimai, Bazarbai`s daughter. Bazarbai is a ‘bai’ (a rich landowner or cattle-breeder in Central Asia) in a small nomads’ village. People enjoy life, sing songs, get married, and give birth to children there. Oguz, a young ‘jigit’ (a skilled horseman), also seeks Begimai`s favor. Having cheated Oguz wins a kok-boru competition (a goat-carcass polo) and becomes a leading jigit in Bazarbai`s village.
Esen feels insulted by the unfair loss longing to take revenge on the offender. Esen steals ‘oochew’ (the best part of horse meat) cooked especially for guests and gives it to his dog. This makes his brother Asan send Esen away from the village in a cruel way. Bagimai follows her beloved. However, Oguz catches up with Esen and beats him almost to death.
Bazarbai`s eldest daughter gets married to a wealthy man. It will be a disgrace to Bazarbai if he does not serve meat to his guests. When Bazarbai is informed that there is no firewood left, he gets very angry and orders the old sacred tree, the only one available in the area, to be cut down. After Bazarbai orders the sacred tree to be cut down, everything changes overnight, there come times of chaos and hostility. Cattle perish. The sacred tree Mazar administers its punishment.
Esen is to have a fight with his old rival Oguz to restore a former quiet life in his home village and mountains.