Films by Rati Tsiteladze, Ana Urushadze in Melbourne fest screening

The Australian event is one of the oldest film festivals around the world. Photo: Melbourne International Film Festival., 01 Aug 2018 - 19:00, Tbilisi,Georgia

Award-winning works by two Georgian filmmakers will be part of this year’s Melbourne International Film Festival, one of the world’s oldest cinema festivals and an "Australian cultural icon”, which opens tomorrow.

Rati Tsiteladze’s European Film Academy-nominated documentary Prisoner of Society and Ana Urushadze’s Asia Pacific Screen Awards Jury Grand Prize-winning drama Scary Mother will be among films screened at the Australian festival.

Selected for the International Programme of the principal cinema event of the continent, the two works will screen to visitors on four different dates.

Urushadze’s feature is also a winner of the Cineuropa Prize at the 2017 Sarajevo Film Festival, where it premiered.

It follows a Georgian housewife who finally takes up her dream of writing, years after initially shelving the idea in favour of taking care of household work. As the protagonist of the story begins reading her first published book to family members, she realises her fears of negative reception from relatives are becoming a reality.

It was praised for "confident tone and unquestioning commitment to its fearless protagonist, a complicated artist caught between motherhood and the wilds of her own imagination” by the jury of this year’s San Francisco International Film Festival, where it was distinguished with the Golden Gate Award.

Scary Mother will screen at the Forum Theatre venue on August 7 and the Kino Cinema 1 on August 12.

In his short documentary Tsiteladze follows Adelina, a young transgender woman whose identity clashes with a conservative society and her traditional family.

Director Rati Tsiteladze will bring his short documentary ‘Prisoner of Society’ to the festival in the coastal city. Photo: Rati Tsiteladze filmmaker Facebook page.

It was named Best Documentary of the Tampere Film Festival in Finland earlier this year and nominated for a European Film Academy prize.

Prisoner of Society is an intimate journey into the world and mind of a young transgender woman trapped between personal desire for freedom and traditional expectations of her parents [...]”, said a summary of the short for the Tampere event.

A co-production effort between Georgia and Latvia, the film was co-written by Tsiteladze with screenwriter Nino Varsimashvili.

Visitors of the Melbourne event will be able to see it at the Hoyts 3 venue on August 9 and ACMI 2 on August 17.

Held since 1952, the Melbourne events is one of the world’s earliest festivals and will run in the coastal city between August 2-19.