2013 | Drama | 102 minutes | Georgian with English subtitles
Eka and Natia are 14-year-olds and best friends growing up in post-Soviet Georgia. Natia, more precocious than Eka, has two boys interested in her, Kote and Lado. Before Lado goes to Moscow to visit his uncle, he gives Natia a revolver with one bullet. He tells her it’s for protection. Natia and Kote eventually get married but it’s not a happy union. Natia sneaks out and visits Eka at her grandmother’s house, where she sees Lado. When Kote finds Natia spending time with Lado, he goes into a jealous rage. Kote gathers a few friends and attacks and kills Lado. Hearing of the murder Natia becomes incensed. She gets her gun and is determined to kill Kote. Eka intercepts Natia before she leaves her house and Eka is able to calm her and prevent her from killing Kote. The two end up at a nearby pond where Eka throws the gun in the water.
Why Stream This Film?
- Rotten Tomatoes Score (Critics Consensus): 92%
- Metacritic Score: 72
Academy Awards: The film was selected as the Georgian entry for the Best Foreign Language Film
Berlin International Film Festival: Winner, C.I.C.A.E. Prize
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The effects of Georgia’s conflict with Russia find turbulent expression in girls trying to grow up in a dangerous world. The business of Nana Ekvtimishvili and Simon Gross’s very assured drama is insecurity: it charts some stormy teenage rites of passage amid the chaos of the Georgian civil war.
As arthouse coming-of-age films go, this is brilliant—smart and sensitive with a screw-you feminist streak. And it’s beautifully acted by two first-time actresses playing Eka and Natia, who have been friends forever.
An astute and observant film, tough and unsentimental. The two lead performances—Lika Babluani as Eka and Mariam Bokeria as Natia—are direct and unaffected, but also enigmatic in the way nonprofessional screen acting can be in the hands of a sensitive director.
Georgia’s reputation as the latest cinematic hotspot for emerging talent is enhanced further by IN BLOOM, an absorbing, intelligently assembled coming-of-ager that revolves around two pubescent gal-pals growing up in 1992, just after independence was restores.
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