light gazing, ışığa bakmak

Monday, May 2, 2016

Tangerines by Zaza Urushadze (“Cinema is a big fraud.”)

Portuguese TV is always a surprise and sometimes a good one. It's quite a shame that the good surprises tend to happen at untimely hours, like the middle of the night for instance, while the useful hours of the evening are crowded by bad quality shows and soap operas. TangerinesMandariinid, a film by Zaza Urushadze, a Georgian film director, about the pointlessness of war was one of the good surprises - a few minutes of dialogue were enough to entice me to watch the rest of the story.

Many of the reviewers on Mubi and not only point out the weak script and some déjà vus, specially concerning the "anti-war" theme. As soon as a film even questions the sense and purpose of war a million voices come up questioning the many times the theme has been treated, the clichés and so on and so forth. It just baffles me: when the industry is filled with movies glorifying war and the lives of "heroes" in the battlefield, it seems to me the balance is pretty flimsy. This is not an industry film for the box office, but the expression of a painful reality. It focuses on the Georgian was of independence and the collapse of the Soviet empire. Georgia is a country of turbulent history, with feisty neighbours that have often expanded into long time empires. That region of the Back Sea is not at rest even today as the recent and appaling invation of Crimea so well proved (some call it 'intervention', a more polite word). The unrest in Nagorno Karabach is another signal of the undelying and unresolved tensions of the region. Long time neighbours and friends can be lead to kill each other apparently out of anything at any minute. The migrations following the fall of the Soviet empire, as the forced migrations during the entire existence of that empire, are never remembered in excess. There will always be a group of people that remain forgotten by the so called mainstream, that blind avalanche of informational propaganda we got used to calling the news.

I like the 'Mandarine' name and idea running through the story, the colorful and sweet fruit being a well-seen symbol of the land's richness and generosity against the background of human dark ways.

wiki here.
imdb here.
mubi here.
review here, I like this one and the clues to similar films (lemon and corn!)

(aos amigos que convidei para o mubi, desculpem, mas são 30 dias de filmes à borliu)

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