BLIND DATES შემთხვევითი პაემნები
Georgia – 2013 – DCP – color – 98’
Direction: Levan Koguashvili
Screenplay: Boris Frumin, Levan Koguashvili in collaboration with Andro Sakvarelidze
Cinematography: Tato Kotetishvili
Editing: Nodar Nozadze
Set design: Kote Japharidze
Music: Iakob Bobokhidze, Otar Tevdoradze, Vakhtang Gogolashvili, Galaktion Tabidze
Costumes: Tinatin Kvinikadze
Cast: Andro Sakvarelidze, Ia Sukhitashvili, Archil Kikodze, Vakhtang Chachanidze, Kakhi Kavsadze, Marina Kartsivadze, Marika Antadze, Sopho Gvritishvili, Jano Izoria, Marlen Egutia, Levan Glonti, Sopho Shakarishvili, Lida Dadiani, Liza Jorjadze, Irina Popiashvili, Avtandil Mikadze, Mamuka Maisuradze, Nino Kakabadze, Irakli Shioshvili, Marina Burduli, Ani Tsetskhladze, Keti Egutidze, Tsitso Gigauri, David Kiknadze
Producers: Suliko Tsulukidze, Levan Koguashvili, Olena Yershova
Production: Kino Iberica, Millimeter Film with support of Georgian National Filmcenter with participation of Tato Film, Nebo Film, Barandov Studio
Sandro is a 40-year old Tbilisi teacher, who still lives with his parents. His mother constantly bugs him to grow up and get married, but Sandro has little luck with the women he and his single friend Iva look up on dating sites. After yet another unsuccessful date, Sandro meets hairdresser Manana and falls in love with her. However, Manana turns out to be married and her husband Tengo turns out to be released on probation. Hoping to talk to Tengo as man to man, Sandro accompanies Manana to the prison. Staying at a safe distance at first, he is soon spotted as he accidentally locks himself out of his car. Tengo comes to help – unsuspecting that Sandro is his wife’s love interest. Sandro introduces himself as a part – time car driver and Tengo offers him a job. Hoping that he will thus have a chance to talk to the man, Sandro agrees despite Manana’s mute expostulations. Tengo’s first place of business is the refugees shelter to visit Natia, who had made pregnant before going to jail. He gives Natia money for an abortion, but the woman refuses to use it.
THE DIRECTOR: LEVAN KOGUASHVILI
Born in Tbilisi in 1973, Levan Koguashvili studied Film Production at the University of Tbilisi, but one year after he began his studies a war broke out in Georgia and he started to work as a journalist. Between 1995 and 1999, Levan studied Film Directing at the Institute of Film (VGIK) in Moscow, and in 2007, he graduated from the Tisch School of the Art’s Graduate Film Program (New York Univ.). Levan’s short film The Debt (2005) won a number of awards at international film festivals, and was in the official selection of the 2006 Sundance FF. His documentaries – Father and Son (2003) and The Women from Georgia (2008) – have also taken part in many festivals, and have also been awarded prizes. His first feature Street Days was an international succes. The film premiered at The Rotterdam FF in 2010 and by many critics was regarded as the beginning of a new wave of the modern Georgian cinema. In 2013 Levan shot his second feature film Blind Dates.
My first film Street Days was about guys from “lost generation” that grew up during Soviet times. When Soviet system collapsed, many of them could not adapt to new circumstances. They lost themselves in unemployment and drugs. They tried to survive through “street” friendship, commitment to family, but often finished life tragically. After Street Days, I needed to write positive story. In Street Days I used humor to tell a story, and the warm reception by the audience encouraged me to move further in that direction. I realized that I should continue to explore Georgian life, to deal with Georgian characters, to put on record contemporary ethics, but to encourage characters to stay positive, to upheld comedic treatment of material.
Blind dates is about single men in their 40 still living with their parents, about Georgian refugees of war with Russia, defending family honor, about girl’s jealousy toward favorite teacher, who falls in love with her mom, about criminal who is desperate to keep his family together after coming from prison. Current time mixes internet dates in empty hotels, female soccer, lifeless resort sites as background for love story, traditional funeral as scene for crime activities etc.
I want to show sentimental, funny and often strange life and laugh about it. Laugh, but not to ridicule. To ridicule is to be arrogant, cold, whereas laughter helps us to get closer to the characters, to identify with them, to understand and accept their problems. The positive, warm tone of the film is important. In Georgia, despite all the wars, misery and constant political and social problems, the people are warm. I’ve experienced this reality and I want to share this with others. I think making Blind dates is important, because in our pragmatic and often cold times “warmth” of human relationships helps.
2003 Father and Son (doc)
2005 The Debt (short)
2008 The Women from Georgia (doc)
2010 Street Days
2013 Blind Dates
AWARDS AND FESTIVALS
2013 Toronto IFF
2013 Tokyo IFF
2013 Abu Dhabi IFF: Special Jury Award