London is currently playing host to the Georgian Film Festival. The fifth time the event has been held in the British capital. This year’s edition is dedicated to 100 years of Georgian independence and is being organised by British Georgian Society.
The vast majority of the films being shown have female directors, some of them have won awards, and as such many reflect the contemporary circumstances of Georgia’s young generation, and the daily life of women. The films are dedicated to the challenges faced by people from different social backgrounds, including former prisoners and various ethnic and sexual minorities.
Among the movies being shown is My Happy Family, produced by Nana Ekvtimishvili, which reflects the reality for women living in a patriarchal society and describes the daily life of an ordinary Georgian family, which consists of three generations under one roof. The movie has won several international festivals. Another piece, The Gospel of Anasyrma is dedicated to the life of a transgender woman in Georgia. The main actor is a trans activist, Bianka Shigurova, who died a couple of years ago. The movie Gogota’s New Life, produced by Levan Koguashvili, describes the challenges of former prisoners, who have spent 14 years in prison and are trying to start a new life.
After each film have been shown, the audience has an opportunity to discuss the themes raised with the directors and actors. Furthermore, besides new films, the festival includes a number of classic Georgian movies.
The Guardian has already written in high praise of the festival, claiming that, as opposed to Cannes, where women directed only three out of 21 featured films, more than half of the movies being shown at the Georgian Film Festival in London have been produced by women. There has been an explosion of talented female film-makers in Georgia.
Besides the festival itself, the organisers have arranged an exhibition of Georgian cinema posters from the National Archives which reflect the history of Georgian cinematography from 1930 to 1980.
The festival runs until May 8 at the Regent Street Cinema in London.