There Once Was A Singing Blackbird (Iko shashvi mgalobeli) – Otar Iosseliani Georgia 1970 85m U
Sunday 29th September at 12.30pm Riverside Studios Box office 020 8237 1111 Book online
With Gela Kandelaki, Gogi Chkheidze and Jansug Kakhidze
Gia is a carefree young percussionist who works at a theatre in Tbilisi. He spends his days busy with friends, girls, guests – but what is the real meaning of his life? A poetic masterpiece from one of Georgia’s greatest directors.
Otar Iosseliani (1934, Tbilisi) studied at the Tbilisi State Conservatory. In 1953 he went to study mathematics in Russia, but left after after two years and entered the State Film Institute, graduating with a diploma in film direction. After making April (1961) he worked as a sailor and then at Rustavi metallurgical factory. Films made in Georgia include: Falling Leaves (1966), Cannes International Critic’s Week 1968, Georges Sadoul Prize and Fipresci Price; There Once Was A Singing Blackbird (1970), Best Foreign Film in Italy 1974 and Cannes Director’s Fortnight 1974; Pastorale (1976). However he grew sceptical about getting enough artistic freedom in his homeland and started working in France where he eventually made his home. Later films include Favourites of the Moon (1984) receiving the Special Jury Prize at the Venice Film Festival, Chasing Butterflies (1992), Brigands-Chapter VII (1996) Special Jury Prize Venice 1996, Home Sweet Home (1998), Monday Morning (2001), Gardens In Autumn (2006) and Chantrapas (2010) shown at the 2nd BGS Georgian Film Festival 2010. He received the Golden Leopard career honour at the 2013 Locarno Film Festival.