The FINANCIAL -- Founded in 2000 the Tbilisi international Film Festival took place for the eighth time this year.
“Never before have we enjoyed so many prominent guests or so many films in the festival program. The visit of Bruno Dumont was by all means a special event. We opened the festival with his film – Flandres, and of course Bob Rafelson, legend of American cinema conducting master classes was an extraordinary highlight,” Declared Nino Anjaparidze, Director of the Tbilisi International Film Festival.
The festival featured Rafelson’s three famous films: The King of Marvin Gardens, The Postman Always Rings Twice and Five Easy Pieces. Rafelson conducted a public lecture and master class.
General Sponsor of the festival was MagtiCom, one of the leading mobile communications company in Georgia. Tbilisi Municipality and Georgian National Film Venter were partners.
“MagtiCom always supports projects promoting arts and culture. This serves as an incentive for the company to provide general sponsorship of the annual Tbilisi International Film Festival for the second time. The festival supports the development of national cinematography. Within the framework of the festival the Georgian spectators shall be offered plenty of the most interesting films and I am very proud that MagtiCom is hosting this big and extremely important event,” said Tatuli Gviniashvili , MagtiCom Event Specialist.
“This is the first time I have been in Georgia and it is very interesting to see so many young people, especially at the lectures and workshops, willing to take advice from professionals. If you want to understand my film you have to have some connection with the former Soviet Union. It is not a coincidence that my film was shown here for the first time since Georgia is a country that was a part of the Soviet Union,” said Renger Van Den Heuvel. “Victory” The film Heuval presented at the festival is a portrait of the Soviet Union through the prism of the 1980 Olympic Games, as told by six former Soviet citizens. In the background of this ‘collage’ of individual portraits is the Cold War as it reached another peak following the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, which also led to a boycott of the Games.
“I have been really impressed with the program of master classes and panel discussions. It is important for young filmmakers to attend these workshops and have active involvement in what is being said and done,” said Bianca Taal, Hubert Bals Fund (International Film Festival Rotterdam) representative.
“I was very curious and interested because I had the opportunity to see films I could not see in Central Europe - Films from Georgia, Azerbaijan, and Armenia. I found it very interesting because, I saw completely different kinds of cinema, and different points of view which was very stimulating,” said Villi Hermann, Swiss director. Hermann participated in the festival with PEDRA. A REPORTER WITHOUT BORDERS.
11 films were presented at the international competition:
FATA MORGANA by Simon Gross, Germany, 2006. The film is about a young couple, lost in the Moroccan desert confronting heat, thirst, endless sand and an enigmatic stranger (Jean-Hugues Anglade) who appears from nowhere;
MY FATHER MY LORD by David Volach, Israel, 2007. The film is a modern-day interpretation of the story of Abraham and Isaac. A Jewish Rabbi travels to the Dead Sea with his family. The Rabbi must choose between his religious duty and his responsibility as a father;
THE TRAP by Srdan Golubovic, Serbia / Germany / Hungary , 2007. The film is a dramatic confession of 35 year old Mladen, to a mysterious listener. Through telling his story, Mladen leads us through the story of the film;
ALL I KNOW ABOUT LOLA by Javier Rebollo, France / Spain, 2006. The film is about a lonesome man who watches the world as if it were a show and suddenly becomes fascinated by an ordinary woman, Lola, deciding from then on to devote himself exclusively to her... She never even knows he exists;
MAGNUS by Kadri Kousaar, Estonia / UK, 2007. Magnus is a sensitive boy from a family where no-one really cares about him. As a child Magnus suffers from a potentially fatal lung disease and he plays bizarre games to cheat death. His father tries to convince him to go on living by sharing his own unorthodox lifestyle. An uneasy and sometimes humorous relationship develops between Magnus and his father, leading to an unexpected conclusion;
A MAN'S JOB by Aleksi Salmenperä, Finland, 2007. The film is about a 38 year old man with three small children and a depressed wife. One day he is fired from his job. Ashamed, he weaves a web of lies to hide the fact from his family. With the help of his friend Olli, he begins prostituting himself to support his wife and children;
PINGPONG by Matthias Luthardt, Germany, 2006. The film is about the story of a search for an ideal world, by a boy who intrudes upon a seemingly ideal family;
SIMPLE THINGS by Aleksei Popogrebsky, Russia , 2006. An anaesthesiologist in a St. Petersburg hospital never took life too seriously. But now he gets into problems with his girlfriend, his daughter runs away from home and his wife declares she is pregnant;
THE RUSSIAN TRIANGLE by Aleko Tsabadze, Georgia, 2007 the film is about the war which demands newer and newer victims;
SONHOS DE PEIXE by Kirill Mikhanovsky, Brazil / Russia / USA, 2006. A 17 year old boy, scrapes a living by diving 30 meters for lobster. His “prize” at the end of a long day of risky work is sitting close to Ana, who dreams of leaving the village to see the world;
TRICKS by Andrzej Jakimowski, Poland, 2007. Stefek, 6, throws down the gauntlet for Providence to take it up. The story is about a boy who believes that a chain of small events he makes happen will let him get closer to his father, who has dumped his mother for another woman. In his game with fate, the boy decides to raise the stakes to a dangerously high level.
The composition of the international jury was headed by German director Ulriche Otingher.
The premiere AMERICA IN A ROOM by Davit Kandelaki was held within the frame work of the festival. The film is about the 50 year old Georgian architect, which has been in New York’s well known prison Sing for 13 years already, he has a life sentence for nothing.
“This is the story of a person living in the closed space of the Soviet Union. He had been dreaming about the free world since childhood. There was a period in his life when he saw the chance of creating a free world in Georgia, but it ended in failure. Our hero travelled to the place he was dreaming about, to America, but he got put in prison there,” said kandelaki. “Paradox though it is, in prison he found faith, which helps him survive and preserve his humanity. We have to return this man home. Everyone who can help should help because he is not a man who deserves to be ignored and rejected by his country.”
For the first time this year cash prizes of USD 7 000 for the Golden Prometheus best film prize and USD 5 000 for the Silver Prometheus have been established and awarded to the winners of the festival.