Discovering Georgian Cinema, Parts I and II
September 23–December 21, 2014
The Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive joins forces with The Museum of Modern Art’s Department of Film to present the largest-ever retrospective of Georgian cinema in the United States. This passion project, undertaken by successive curatorial staffs at the two organizations over more than 20 years, is a two-part series bringing together 45 programs—in prints sourced from multiple archives throughout Europe, the U.S., and the republics of Georgia and Russia—encompassing the history of Georgian film production from 1907 to 2014. The exhibition traces the development of Georgian cinema from classics of the silent era to great achievements of the early sound and Soviet era, through the flourishing 1980s and the post-Soviet period to today.
Throughout the turbulent history of the last century, Georgian cinema has been an important wellspring for national identity, a celebration of the spirit, resilience, and humor of the Georgian people. These filmmakers, working across a broad range of styles and thematic concerns, have created everything from anti-bureaucratic satires of the Soviet system, to philosophical studies rooted in a humanist tradition, to lyrical, poetic depictions of the region’s spectacular landscape. Discovering Georgian Cinema illuminates not only Georgia’s rich cinematic heritage, but how that tradition can be traced through to its modern incarnation: equally personal, equally bold, and eternally unique.
PART I: A FAMILY AFFAIR
September 23–October 16
Part I of the series focuses on one of the particularities of the Georgian cinema: the remarkable lines of familial relationships that weave through and connect its cinematic production from the 1920s to the present, where we find several third-generation filmmakers active.
PART II: BEYOND THE BLUE MOUNTAINS
November 22–December 21
Part II of the series blends old and new by showcasing classics from the silent era by early masters such as Ivan Perestiani, Kote Mikaberidze, and Vasil Amashukeli. We continue to explore the great achievements of the early sound and Soviet era, including key works by Otar Iosseliani and Sergei Paradjanov, and highlight both the flourishing 1970s and 1980s and contemporary works with a personal appearance by of one of the leading lights, Levan Koguasvhili.
Film notes are adapted from research and writing by the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive. Film titles are listed with English translations first, followed by [Georgian] and, where applicable, (Russian).
Discovering Georgian Cinema is a collaboration between the University of California, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, and The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Organized by Susan Oxtoby, Senior Film Curator, BAM/PFA, and Jytte Jensen, Curator, Department of Film, MoMA. Special thanks to the Georgian National Film Center, Tbilisi; the National Archives of Georgia, Tbilisi; and Sofia Babluani; Nino Chichua; and Candace Ming, Intern, Department of Film, MoMA.
The presentation at MoMA is made possible by the Georgian Government.
Major support is provided by The International Council of The Museum of Modern Art.
Prints courtesy of BAM/PFA, Icarus Films, GNFC, Tbilisi Film Studio, and BFI.
Related Film Screenings
Ar Daidardo [Ne Goriui!] (Don’t Grieve aka Don’t Worry)
1969. USSR. Directed by Giorgi Danelia. With Vakhtang Kikabidze, Sergo Zakariadze, Anastasia Virtinskaya, Sofiko Chiaureli. Danelia’s tuneful village idyll, acclaimed as one of the most “Georgian” films ever made for its proud display of song, dance, and traditional culture, follows a young and carefree country doctor who prefers drinking, dancing, and romancing to moving up the social ladder. First introduced crooning along the roadside like a Georgian Raj Kapoor, our hero dodges his vexed sister, a jealous husband, and a pompous lord while seeking out what matters: alcohol, dance, honor, and, most of all, friendship. Danelia, a nephew in the creative Chiaureli dynasty who is best known for his sci-fi satires (33, Kin-dza-dza), here creates a realm born out of Georgia itself. In Russian; English subtitles. 90 min.
Magdanas lurja [Lurdzha Magdany] (Magdana’s Donkey)
1955. USSR. Directed by Tengiz Abuladze, Rezo Chkeidze. With Dudukhana Tserodze, L. Moistsrapishvili, Mikho Borashvili. The debut feature of Abuladze and Chkeidze, fresh out of the Institute of Cinematography in Moscow, is a charming folk tale that was hailed as the start of a “new wave” in Soviet cinema and won the Grand Prix at the Cannes Film Festival. Sometime around 1890, in a small Georgian village high above a teeming town, the widow Magdana lives in a shack with her three children; walking to market along dirt roads and rocky hillsides, she ekes out a living selling yogurt. When her children find a donkey lying by the road and nurse it to health, it seems the family's troubles are over. In Georgian; English subtitles. 67 min.
Ramodenime interviu pirad sakitkhebze [Neskol’ko interv’iu po lichnym voprosam] (Several Interviews on Personal Matters)
1979. USSR. Directed by Lana Gogoberidze. With Sofiko Chiaureli. Sofiko, a young newspaper employee, is passionately involved in her work interviewing people who have submitted complaint letters to the editor. One of the women Sofiko interviews is her mother, and the pair’s onscreen relationship strongly resembles the tragic early life of the director and her mother, making this a very personal film for Gogoberidze. A bold mixture of documentary and social-psychological drama—and the first film to make mention of Stalin’s camps—Several Interviews on Personal Matters makes powerful statements about women, work, family, and marriage that earned it international acclaim as the first feminist film of the Soviet cinema. In Georgian; English subtitles. 95 min.
Un Dragon dans les eaux pures du Caucase (The Pipeline Next Door)
2005. France. Directed by Nino Kirtadze. David faces Goliath when a village of Georgian farmers takes on the BP oil corporation in this evenhanded, character-driven documentary. Kirtadze’s verité approach captures the negotiations, breakdowns, heartbreak, and anger, surrounding BP’s purchase of Georgian countryside to construct a 1,700-kilometer pipeline from Kazakhstan to the Black Sea. The villagers try for solidarity but find envy and mistrust as their way of life is crudely upended, and the BP spokespeople are caught in the unending march toward a supposedly ever-brighter future. In English, Georgian, Russian; English subtitles. 90 min.
Motsurave [Plovets] (The Swimmer)
1981. USSR. Written and directed by Irakli Kvirikadze. With Gudea Burduli, Ruslan Mikaberidze, Badur Zuladze. This amusing, artfully crafted tale of three generations of long-distance swimmers is told from the perspective of Anton Dumbadze, whose legendary grandfather, Durmishkan, and father, Domenti, were each obsessed with the idea of swimming the Black Sea from Batumi to Poti—twice the distance of the English Channel. Filled with alluring glimpses of Georgian folklore and a searing critique of Stalinist purges, The Swimmer had a fitful history: shot in 1981, postproduction was interrupted before a Georgian version could be completed; three years later, a shortened cut of the film was released. In Georgian; English subtitles. 105 min.
Robinzonada ili moi Angliysky deduchka (Robinsonada aka My English Grandfather )
1986. USSR. Directed by Nana Dzhordzhadze. Written by Irakli Kvirikadze. With Janri Lolashvili, Nineli Chankvetadze, Guram Pirtskhalava. A prime example of the Georgian facility for wit and humor, Robinsonada, which won the Camera d’Or at the 1987 Cannes Film Festival, is an absurdist political comedy about a 1920s British engineer, in Georgia to help build a telegraph line, who falls in love with the sister of the local political boss. When he is driven out of the village after a quarrel, he takes up residence by the telegraph poles, declaring three yards around every pole British territory and creating a safe haven where the lovers can meet. In Georgian; English subtitles. 76 min.
Lursmani cheqmashi [Gvozd’ v sapoge] (A Nail in the Boot)
1930/32. USSR. Directed by Mikhail Kalatozov. With Aleqsandre Jaliashvili, Siko Palavandishvili, Akaki Khorava. In this ostensible allegory of Soviet industry, the poor quality of a nail in a soldier's boot leads to the defeat of a military unit on maneuvers. Its symbolism lost on the literal-minded, who felt it reflected poorly on the military preparedness of the Red Army, the film was banned by Soviet officials. Perhaps more threatening than the film's subject was its style: “The film came at a time when other directors had already begun to feel the chill of criticism for abstract films” (Alexander Birkos, Soviet Cinema: Directors and Films). This masterful film marked the beginning of a seven-year period of inactivity for Kalatozov. Silent; Russian intertitles, simultaneous English translation, and piano accompaniment. 54 min.
Ojakhi (The Family)
1985. USSR. Written and directed by Nana Janelidze. With Veriko Anjaparidze, Natela Mikhaldiani, Tina Mepisashvili. Originally made for TV, this slice-of-life drama reveals Janelidze’s keen eye for intergenerational family dynamics. Lovingly made with an authenticity that has a near-documentary feel. In Georgian; Russian voiceover and English subtitles.. 25 min.
Netavi ik teatri aris?! (Will There Be a Theater Up There?!)
2011. Georgia. Directed and cowritten by Nana Janelidze. With Kakhi Kavsadze. Based on the true life experiences of the Kavsadze family, and starring one of the most popular Georgian actors, Kakhi Kavsadze, this powerful film—part historical essay and part recreated biography—uses the tragic circumstances of the 20th century (WWII and the aftermath of the Soviet regime) as the backdrop for a chronicle of a Georgian family. Opening scenes depict a former railroad-car repair plant bearing the name of Stalin, before the film proceeds to the stage of Tbilisi’s Rustaveli Theater, an apt location filled with poetic resonances for a poignant work of reclaimed history. In Georgian; English subtitles. 55 min.
1929. USSR. Directed by Mikheil Chiaureli. With Aleksandre Jaliashvili, Veriko Anjaparidze, L. Januashvili. The stylish, moody silent-era melodrama Saba—a morality tale about the hazards of alcohol consumption that is nonetheless not without humor—reworks Boris Sigal’s play The Trial of Stepan Korolev, setting the action in Tbilisi rather than Leningrad and significantly developing the storyline with respect to protagonist, Saba (Jaliashvili). The film displays dynamic shot compositions, sophisticated editing, and expressive character types in both the lead and supporting roles, and the location shooting offers glimpses of Tbilisi’s distinctive landmarks. Silent; Russian intertitles, simultaneous English translation, and piano accompaniment. 100 min.
Vedreba [Molba] (The Prayer aka The Plea)
1967. USSR. Directed by Tengiz Abuladze. With Ramaz Chkhikvadze, Spartak Bagashvili, Rusudan Kiknadze.One of the great films from Georgia—and the USSR as a whole—was featured at the 1975 London Film Festival (nearly a decade after it was made), where Brian Baxter noted: “Quite surely a masterpiece and one of the most strikingly original and beautiful films ever made. It is shot in the deepest blacks and almost blinding whites, tightly compressing its complex tale of love, hate, and revenge. The screenplay is taken from [two poems by Vaza Psavela] (. . .) Abuladze has managed to convey the ‘epic’ quality of the piece by superb use of the harsh landscapes and the integration of the characters within the surroundings.” In Georgian; English subtitles. 80 min.
Djariskatsis mama [Otets soldata] (Father of a Soldier )
1965. USSR. Directed by Rezo Chkheidze. With Sergo Zakariadze. This old-fashioned tale of a father’s love for his son is the most beloved of all Georgian films due to its unapologetically heroic portrait of a taciturn Georgian farmer looking for his son in the midst of war. Throughout his harrowing journey into the heart of the fascist advancement and eventual Bolshevik comeback, the farmer’s love of the land is consistently contrasted with the waste of war. The incomparable Zakariadze perfectly inhabits the role, giving extra weight the the film’s devastating conclusion. In Russian, Georgian; English subtitles. 83 min.
Begurebis gadafrena [Perelet vorobiev] (Flight of the Sparrows aka Migrating Sparrows)
1980. USSR. Written and directed by Teimur Babluani. With Elguja Burduli, Teimur Bichiashvili, Rezo Esadze. The succinctly scripted allegory Flight of the Sparrows begins aboard a crowded third-class passenger train traveling through Soviet Georgia at night. An eccentric cast of characters passes the time chatting, occasionally arguing with each other. Tensions build when a burly man in a leather jacket—with a pet sparrow tucked inside his chest pocket—and another man, who is well dressed and claims to have travelled the world, engage in a fistfight. The film is exquisitely shot in black-and-white Cinemascope—accentuating the close quarters of the train cabin—before the action shifts to a totally different setting. In Georgian; English subtitles. 60 min.
2005. Georgia/France. Written and directed by Gela Babluani. With Georges Babluani, Aurélien Recoing, Pascal Bongard. A black-and-white neo-noir with style and suspense to spare, Gela Babluani’s debut feature garnered plenty of awards—from Sundance to Venice and beyond—to go with its cult following. A naïve young man (played by the director’s brother) who is supporting his family of refugees, intercepts a train ticket and some directions and decides to take a chance at changing his luck. A circuitous route lands him in an ominous castle amid a life-and-death game that promises a huge payout for the last man standing. The terrifically harrowing milieu is expertly crafted, and even at the most extreme edges of sociopathic behavior, every face and gesture seems utterly authentic. In French, Georgian; English subtitles. 93 min.
Que puis-je te souhaiter avant le combat? (What Can I Wish You Before the Fight?)
2012. France. Written and directed by Sofia Babluani. Set in an unspecified war zone and with an atmosphere of mounting tension, this vignette about mistaken identity and communication that transcends barriers packs plenty of emotional punch. In French; English subtitles. 16 min.
Jim Shvante [Sol’ Svanetii] (Salt for Svanetia)
1930. USSR. Directed by Mikhail Kalatozov. Screenplay by Kalatazov, from an idea by Sergei Tretyakov. Kalatazov’s debut film places him alongside the great Soviet directors, and this haunting portrait of the difficult life in a village in the remote, snowbound Caucasus is especially reminiscent of Alexander Dovzhenko in its poetic treatment of man in nature. Kalatozov uses the poetry of repetition and juxtaposition, distance and extreme close-up, wild rhythms and seemingly impossible angles, to jar us into the kind of recognition that only art can obtain. Silent; Russian intertitles, simultaneous English translation, and piano accompaniment. 66 min.
Monanieba [Pokayanie] (Repentance)
1984 (released 1987). USSR. Directed by Tengiz Abuladze. Screenplay by Abuladze, Rezo Kveselava, Nana Janelidze. With Avtandil Makharadze, Iji Ninidze, Merab Ninidze, Zeinab Botsvadze. In the Soviet Union, Repentance was as much an event as a film, one of the most important censored films to be rescued from the shelf with the new cultural liberalization, and the first to deal with the terrors of the Stalin era. This it does in an oblique but unmistakable way typical of Abuladze, whose art is one of symbolism and surrealism. The central character is a parody of a dictator, with attributes of Stalin, Hitler, and Mussolini. Abuladze's allegorical parable is at once specific to the memory of actual historical horrors, and more generally a Kafkaesque reflection of the collective memory of tyranny. In Georgian; English subtitles. 153 min.
Natvris khe [Drevo zhelanii] (The Wishing Tree)
1977. USST. Co-written and Directed by Tengiz Abuladze. With Lika Davtaradze, Soso Dchatchvliani, Zaza Kolelishvili. The textures of folk legend and striking visual allegory permeate The Wishing Tree, an episodic pastorale set in the pre-Revolutionary village of Kachetien (the birthplace of the famous painter Pirosmani). Drawing on Pirosmani’s vision, as well as on Brueghel, Abuladze, one of Georgian cinema’s greatest treasures, creates a work that is manifold in meaning. Some 22 stories are woven into the narrative, which centers on a beautiful young woman who is forced to marry a man she does not love; her unsanctioned love for another leads her to ritual disgrace and sacrifice. Death opens the film and closes it, but in between The Wishing Tree is abundant with life. In Georgian; English subtitles. 108 min.
2009. Georgia. Directed by Salomé Alexi. With Marina Kobakhidze (voiceover), Gia Abesalashvili, Rusudan Bolkvadze, Paata Guliashvili. Deadpan, hilarious, and filled with subtle character schtick, Felicità is a pure delight. The central character is absent, heard only on speakerphone at her husband’s funeral. In this, her fourth short film, Salomé Alexi (the granddaughter of Noutsa Gogoberidze) takes a regular societal occurrence—women who support their families by working abroad—and mines it for dramatic effect. In Georgian; English subtitles. 30 min.
1930. USSR. Directed by Noutsa Gogoberidze. Long suppressed and nearly written out of film history, Buba is an exceptional documentary filmed in the northern reaches of Georgia, in the remote mountainous region of Racha. This artistic collaboration between Georgia’s first female director, Noutsa Gogoberidze, and the noted avant-garde painter David Kakabadze—a work of exhilarating cinematic splendor featuring luminous cinematography and dynamic montage—was originally intended as propaganda; Gogoberidze was closely associated with filmmakers Alexander Dovzhenko, Sergei Eisenstein, and Mikhail Kalatozov. Silent; Russian intertitles, English subtitles. 39 min.
This special program showcases recent efforts to digitally restore examples of the Kulturfilm boom that occurred in the late 1920s and early 1930s, made by young cinephile directors in Soviet Georgia. Film archivist Nino Dzandzava will present and discuss “four short films united by the concept of the ‘body as machine.’ Siko Dolidze’s Call of the Land (1928), and Kote Miqaberidze and Vasil Dolenko’s You Must Reap as You Have Sown (1930) are dedicated to the urgent problems of a young socialist republic, especially the mechanization of labor on collective farms. Aleqsandre Jaliashvili’s Ten Minutes in the Morning (1930) and Vakhtang Shvelidze’s Collective Farmers’ Hygiene (1934) represent a state policy of promoting physical culture and exercise as a form of healthcare” (Nino Dzandzava, Le Giornate del Cinema Muto).
Beth Custer Ensemble Accompanies Kote Mikaberidze’s My Grandmother
Held in conjunction with MoMA’s Discovering Georgian Cinema exhibition, this special presentation, introduced by Nikolay Mikhailovich Borodachev, the Director of the Russian state archive Gosfilmofond in Moscow, features a live performance by Beth Custer Ensemble of an original score commissioned by Berkeley Art Museum/Pacific Film Archive (BAM/PFA). With thanks to the International Council of The Museum of Modern Art.
My Grandmother (Chemi Bebia/Moya Babushka)
1929. USSR. Directed and cowritten by Kote Mikaberidze. With Aleksandre Takaishvili, Bella Chernova, E. Ovanov. Mikaberidze’s satire of Soviet bureaucracy is a genuine piece of grotesquerie, a Georgian version of the antic experiments of FEKS (the Factory of the Eccentric Actor). The film’s most memorable character is a wide-eyed, wild-haired wife of a bureaucrat, caught up in a frenzy of bourgeois living. Her equally comic husband, modeled after Harold Lloyd, personifies the indolence and irrelevance of a State system that resembles nothing so much as a roundtable defended by benighted stooges. When the husband loses his job, he learns the value of a “grandmother”—a slang term for the boodle that moves the table round. This irreverent blast, complete with Constructivist sets and deconstructivist slapstick, has lost none of its bite. Russian intertitles; simultaneous English translation. 65 min.
Brma Paemnebi (Blind Dates)
2013. Georgia. Directed by Levan Koguashvili. With Andro Sakhvarelidze, Ia Sukhitashvili, Archil Kikodze. A prime example of contemporary Georgian cinema, this entertaining romantic tragicomedy tells the story of fortysomething Sandro (Sakhvarelidze), who still lives at home with his parents and seems to have no luck at finding true love. The plotline takes its twists and turns as Sandro and his best friend (Kikodze) meet and date various women. Their misadventures, and Sandro’s home life, are beautifully observed by Koguashvili and his frequent writing partner, Boris Frumin, who has a gift for presenting fictional lives with an air of authenticity and whimsy that captures life’s everyday challenges. In Georgian; English subtitles. 95 min.
Quchis dgeebi (Street Days)
2010. Georgia. Directed by Levan Koguasvhili. With Guga Kotetishvili, Irakli Ramishvili, Giorgi Kipshidze. Filmed against the backdrop of Tbilisi’s old stone walls, lanes, and apartment blocks, this award-winning debut feature presents the world of a middle-aged, unemployed, and drug-addicted protagonist, Checkie (Kotetishvili), with remarkable touches of humor and pathos. Koguashvili’s fine eye for character and intergenerational relationships gives depth to this drama in which, more often than not, it is the women—teachers, medical workers, or family members—who hold society together, balancing men’s foibles. In Georgian; English subtitles. 89 min.
Tsiteli eshmakunebi [Krasnye d’iavoliata] (Little Red Devils aka Red Imps)
1923. USSR. Directed and cowritten by Ivan Perestiani. With Pyotr Yesikovsky, Sofia Zozeffi, V. Sutyrin. Jay Leyda called Little Red Devils “the first Soviet (Georgian) film to compete successfully with all foreign products on the country’s screens.” Set during the Ukrainian War of Independence, the film adopts the styles of American adventure films, à la Douglas Fairbanks (and D. W. Griffith), in narrating the exploits of two daredevil teenagers (brother and sister) and a young black acrobat who volunteer as scouts in the Red Cavalry. V. Sutyrin gives an interesting portrayal of the anarchist leader Makhno, whose band of “bandits” is pursued by Budyenny’s cavalry in the film’s freewheeling recreation of historical events. Silent, with Russian intertitles, simultaneous English translation, and piano accompaniment. 100 min.
Program 113 min.
Work at Oil Derricks and Oil Extraction
1907. Azerbaijan. Directed by Vasil Amashukeli. A documentary on oil production in Baku, then the “black gold” capital of the world. 5 min.
[Puteshestvie Akakiia Tsereteli v Racha-Lechkhumi] (Journey of Akaki Tsereteli to Racha and Lechkhumi )
1912. Georgia. Directed by Vasil Amashukeli. Amashukeli, a director and cinematographer who worked in Azerbaijan and Georgia, is considered the founder of cinema not only in Georgia but in the whole Caucasus. The earliest surviving Georgian documentary featurette from the silent era depicts legendary poet Akaki Tsereteli’s journey to mountainous areas of western Georgia and his interactions with the people living there. Silent, with Russian and Georgian intertitles, and simultaneous English translation. 33 min.
(Otsdaeqvsi komisari) [Dvadtsat’ shest’ komissarov] (Twenty-Six Commissars )
1932. USSR. Directed by Nikoloz Shengelaia. With K. Gasanov, Baba-Zade, Heiri Emirzade. Set against a backdrop of oil derricks and sand dunes, this impressive silent-era feature about the geopolitical struggle for the control of oil fields is still relevant today. “Shengelaia went to the film factory of Azerbaijan, Azerkino, to direct Twenty-Six Commissars...about the 1918 defeat of pro-Soviet forces in Baku, an event that had opened the doors for British and Turkish occupants.... The picture’s stylish pathos and ritualism preceded the monumentalism of the late 1930s–1940s and secured it a place in the annals of Soviet cinema” (Peter Rollberg, Historical Dictionary of Russian and Soviet Cinema). Silent, with Russian, Georgian, and English intertitles and piano accompaniment. 76 min.
Sami sitsotskhle [Tri zhizni] (Three Lives: Parts 1 & 2)
1924. USSR. Directed by Ivan Perestiani. With Mikheil Gelovani, Dimitri Kipiani, Nato Vachnadze. Very different in tone from his Little Red Devils but similar in its directorial approach, Perestiani’s Three Lives was improvised, adapted without a script from Giorgi Tsereteli’s classic novel. Distinctive location shooting, inspired compositions, and beautiful use of natural light lend an atmospheric, almost documentary quality to many scenes in this narrative set in late-19th-century Georgia. The film’s strong cast includes Nato Vachnadze in an early role as Esma, a poor tailor woman. Vachnadze, the real-life mother of directors Eldar and Giorgi Shengelaia, was one of the screen legends of Soviet Georgia. Silent, with Russian intertitles and simultaneous English translation. 150 min; intermission 5 min.
Nash dvor (Our Courtyard aka Our Yard)
1956. USSR. Directed by Rezo Chkheidze. With Sofiko Chiaureli, Giorgi Shengelaia, Leila Abachidze. The picaresque village comedy is updated for Georgia’s postwar urban realities in Rezo Chkheidze’s lyrical tale of life, love, and the pursuit of individual happiness and the collective good inside a chaotic Tbilisi apartment block. Students, scientists, factory workers, and idle gossips call out from the balconies, led by our hero, Dato, a strapping student and factory worker with an eye for the lovely Tsitsino. Inspired by both Italian Neorealism and a swelling pride in what modern Georgia could accomplish, Our Courtyard boasts a star turn by Giorgi Shengelaia, later to become one of Georgia’s most accomplished filmmakers. In Georgian; English subtitles. 89 min.
Postoronites’ aka Zdes’ padaiut kamni (Khabarda aka Forward! Get Out of the Way! )
1931. USSR. Directed and cowritten by Mikheil Chiaureli. With Sergo Zavriev, P. Chkonia, Siko Vachnadze. A painter, political cartoonist, sculptor, and theater director who turned to film in his 30s, Mikheil Chiaureli made 25 films between 1928 and 1974. Some of his work was associated with the creation of Stalinist mythology; he received the Stalin Prize six times. Set in Tbilisi, Khabarda, which Chiaureli cowrote with Sergei Tretyakov, is a satire that plays on the tension between petit bourgeois values and the incoming sweep of Communist ideology. The film was immediately criticized for elements that were insensitive to Georgian culture. However, Chiaureli’s contributions to both radical film style and the expressive pictorial quality of socialist cinema remain impressive. Silent, with Russian intertitles and simultaneous English translation. 64 min.
Elisso (Eliso aka Caucasian Love)
1928. USSR. Nikoloz Shengelaia. 87 min.
1969. USSR. Giorgi Shengelaia. 85 min.
Tsisperi mtebi aka Daujerebeli ambavil [Golubye gory] (Blue Mountains aka An Unbelievable Story)
1984. USSR. Eldar Shengelaia. 97 min.
Manqana, romelic kvelafers gaaqrobs (The Machine which Makes Everything Disappear)
2012. Georgia/Germany. Tinatin Gurchiani. 101 min.
Netavi ik teatri aris?! (Will There Be a Theater Up There?!)
2011. Georgia. Nana Janelidze. 55 min.
Ojakhi (The Family)
1985. USSR. Nana Janelidze. 25 min.
Arachveulebrivi gomopena [Neobyknovennaya vystavka] (An Unusual Exhibition)
1968. USSR. Eldar Shengelaia. 96 min.
Ar Daidardo [Ne Goriui!] (Don’t Grieve aka Don’t Worry)
1969. USSR. Giorgi Danelia. 90 min.
1930. USSR. Noutsa Gogoberidze. 39 min.
2009. Georgia. Salomé Alexi. 30 min.
Den’ dlinneje notchi (The Day Is Longer than the Night)
1984. USSR. Lana Gogoberidze. 105 min.
Natvris khe [Drevo zhelanii] (The Wishing Tree)
1977. USST. Tengiz Abuladze. 108 min.
1929. USSR. Mikheil Chiaureli. 100 min.