Georgia the Focus Country of DOK Leipzig documentary festival, 12 Oct 2017 - 15:17, Tbilisi,Georgia

Contemporary Georgian cinema is in official focus of the largest German documentary and animated film festival, with over a dozen works from the country included in the program of DOK Leipzig 2017.

Award-winning films including Rati Oneli’s City of the Sun and Salome Jashi’s The Dazzling Light of Sunset will be screened at the event attended by over 1,500 guests annually.

It will mark the official Country Focus on Georgia at the anniversary 60th edition of the festival that runs in Germany’s east.

The Country Focus on Georgia explores the rapid recent developments and asks whether the way of making films is changing in view of the fact that the whole world seemingly has its eyes on Georgian cinema”, said a preview of the program from the organisers.

Beside the two acclaimed works by Oneli and Jashi, the Georgian program will also present other prized documentary and animated films to the audience.

Experiences of Georgia’s free spirited youth on the backdrop of conservative values they find themselves in will be explored in When the Earth Seems to Be Light, a 2015 feature by Salome Machaidze, Tamuna Karumidze and David Meskhi.

Similarly to Oneli’s City of the Sun, Vakhtang Jajanidze’s Exodus will delve into the stories of residents of western Georgia’s mining town Chiatura.

Tamta Gabrichidze’s short Sovdagari will follow a Georgian man traversing the countryside looking to sell second-hand clothing and everyday items in a portrayal of the stark contrast between urban and rural life.

The contemporary Georgian filmmaking will be presented by eight more works ranging from five-minute animations to full-length documentaries.

Georgia’s mining town Chiatura in a still from ‘City of the Sun’ by Rati Oneli. Photo: Arseni Khachaturan/Berlinale.

The leading part Georgian female directors take in the recent resurgence of cinema art in the country will be reviewed as four women figures of the field talk to the audience at the festival.

Salome Machaidze and Salome Jashi will be joined by producer Anna Dziapshipa and Nino Lejava from the Tbilisi-based Heinrich-Boell-Foundation South Caucasus on stage.

Under the panel Female Gazes from Georgia the group will discuss the cultural currents and transformations in their home country as well as the role of contemporary documentary productions in reflecting them.

Organisers of DOK Leipzig prepare to launch this year’s event on October 30, with the festival set to run through November 5.