Georgia. 2019. 108 min
Georgia’s Oscar submission tells a harrowing true story taken from the Russo-Georgian War of 2008.
Panic sweeps over a pretty rural village as word spreads that the Russians are coming. Everybody grabs what they can and hurries out of town by oxcart or on foot, knowing they may never see their homes again. Only two families stay behind: stoic old Badri (Goga Pipinashvili) with his sick wife Khatia (Tamar Abshilava); and the burly drunk Vazja (Dato Bakhtadze), still grieving for his dead wife, with his teenage daughter Mariam (Mariam Jibladze), who seems to be in a world of her own. Khatia is recognizably Ossetian, an ethnicity closely allied to the Russians, so she and Badri have some smattering of protection. Vazja has the courage of his angry grief, and one presumes that only the thought of leaving Mariam alone restrains him from shooting a Russian.
At the same time, a local sapper unit of some 20 lightly armed combat engineers learns that a cease-fire has been declared and peace talks are underway. They are to be evacuated from the combat zone without harm.
Dito Tsintsadze (born 2 March 1957) is a Georgian film director and screenwriter. He has directed thirteen films since 1988. His film Lost Killers was screened in the Un Certain Regard section at the 2000 Cannes Film Festival. In 2007 he was a member of the jury at the 29th Moscow International Film Festival. Starting from the year 1996 he lives and works in Berlin.
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