Tbilisi, I Love You (image from Wikipedia)

Tbilisi, I Love You (თბილისი, მიყვარხარ)

Language: Georgian and English with English and Georgian subtitles

Availability: currently in Georgian theatres, eventually coming to a film festival or DVD/streaming service near you

The 4th installment in the “Cities of Love” franchise (following Paris Je T’aime, New York I Love You, and Rio Eu Te Amo) features ten short films about life here in the dedakalaki (დედაქალაქი=capital, literally “mother city”).

I enjoyed some of the shorts more than others, but there weren’t any that I disliked.  My favorites were the bits with the brother and sister, and the couple looking for  a priest.  One thing that I think the film does well is present many different, realistic views of the Georgian (or more precisely, Tbilisian) experience. None of the pieces struck me as something that I couldn’t imagine happening here to real people.  Despite their realism, though, each clip only tells a piece of a story, and the sum total is not necessarily a realistic or representative view of life.  People who don’t know much about Georgia might find the situation rather bleak.  In additions to the depictions of everyday life, the film captures Tbilisi landscapes well–both in their beauty and their charming disrepair (a few of the films also feature some interesting historical footage of the city).

I must say, it’s rather a surreal feeling to be sitting inside a movie theater watching a film, and see the exterior of that same movie theater appear on the screen.  Can’t say THAT has ever happened before.