CinéDOC-Tbilisi documentary fest to mark anniversary edition at iconic Batumi cinema venue

A still from 'Hey, Gunesh!', a documentary by Ana Jegnaradze and Marita Tevzadze featured in the festival. Photo: CinéDOC-Tbilisi, 14 Sep 2022 - 15:24, Tbilisi,Georgia

CinéDOC-Tbilisi international documentary film festival, a major film event on the annual domestic cultural calendar in Georgia, will mark its anniversary 10th edition starting this Sunday at the historical Apollo Cinema venue in the country's Black Sea city of Batumi.

Organisers have announced the programme of the 2022 festival will come to three locations in the city with the in-competition Focus Caucasus selection and the Special Screenings section, and revealed the event would be hosted by Batumi arthouse film festival, a popular annual event currently facing challenges after state institutions pulled financing for this year's edition.

It also marks the return to in-person screenings after pandemic-curtailed years, with audiences invited to three distinct locations to enjoy the selected films.

The headlining venue is Apollo Cinema, a 1910-built art nouveau building in Batumi that is recognised as the first modern cinema theatre in the country. Organisers have also booked the Batumi puppet theatre for screenings, while the Era Square public space will also be open for festival visitors.

'I'll Stand by You', by filmmakers Virginija Vareikyte and Maximilien Dejoie, is in the Special Screenings selection of the festival:

A documentary on Tbilisi-based Liberty Theatre troupe, founded by director Avtandil Varsimashvili 21 years ago, will open the 2022 CinéDOC-Tbilisi programme, with filmmaker George Varsimashvili introducing the story of defiance of the "political theatre" in two screenings.

Its showing will be followed by works by other filmmakers from Georgia and other South Caucasus countries, from 5 Dreamers and a Horse by Vahagn Khachatryan and Aren Malakyan following select individuals in distinct social and cultural contexts to Nurlan Hasanli's Men & Reptiles training its lens on a married couple looking after reptiles.

In the Special Screenings programme, the selection is widened to feature four films by directors from across Europe.

Varda, an introduction to the famed filmmaker Agnès Varda through her own comments, is in the section along with the Swedish-Belgian-Norwegian co-production Nelly & Nadine, about two women who fell in love while in captivity at the Ravensbrück concentration camp during the second world war.

The full programme of the festival's anniversary edition is available here, with film enthusiasts invited to its screenings between September 18-25.