Orjonikidze & Arsenishvili: Altzaney

The camera work is brilliant. It is a constant caress of the protagonist of this short documentary from Georgia. Her name is Altzaney and she is the one who is trusted to solve problems in the local community in the Pankisi gorge. In the first 50 seconds of the film you see hands, white linen being cut by scissors and the face of an old woman. At the end of the film you see that the white linen is used to wrap a corpse for burial. All taken care of by Altzenay.

And at the end you have the feeling of having met a charismatic, lovely old woman with quite extraordinary skills to fulfill the position she has been given as negociator, as the one all troubles are taken to, as the one who cleans the small mosque and takes the lead in the women’s singing, dancing and praying at the modest holy place. She is picked up by cars as a diplomat, she is followed to a wedding, to a family to solve problems, she is called ”granny”, and the camera performs beautiful moves to get close to her face and give us the environment. In short intercuts Altzenay talks directly to the camera about this her mission in life.

Another excellent inside to a place in Georgia, as was the film ”Their Helicopter” by Salome Jashi written about on filmkommentaren.dk.

Georgian documentary talent. Support it! Buy for broadcast. Screen their films at festivals.

Nino Orjonikidze & Vano Arsenishvili: Altzaney, 2009, 31 mins.


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Tue Steen Müller
Tue Steen Müller

Müller, Tue Steen
Documentary Consultant and Critic, DENMARK

Worked with documentary films for more than 20 years at the Danish Film Board, as press officer, festival representative and film consultant/commissioner. Co-founder of Balticum Film and TV Festival, Filmkontakt Nord, Documentary of the EU and EDN (European Documentary Network).
Awards: 2004 the Danish Roos Prize for his contribution to the Danish and European documentary culture. 2006 an award for promoting Portuguese documentaries. 2014 he received the EDN Award “for an outstanding contribution to the development of the European documentary culture”. 2016 The Cross of the Knight of the Order for Merits to Lithuania. 2019 a Big Stamp at the 15th edition of ZagrebDox. 2021 receipt of the highest state decoration, Order of the Three Stars, Fourth Class, for the significant contribution to the development and promotion of Latvian documentary cinema outside Latvia. In 2022 he received an honorary award at DocsBarcelona’s 25th edition having served as organizer and programmer since the start of the festival.
From 1996 until 2005 he was the first director of EDN (European Documentary Network). From 2006 a freelance consultant and teacher in workshops like Ex Oriente, DocsBarcelona, Archidoc, Documentary Campus, Storydoc, Baltic Sea Forum, Black Sea DocStories, Caucadoc, CinéDOC Tbilisi, Docudays Kiev, Dealing With the Past Sarajevo FF as well as programme consultant for the festivals Magnificent7 in Belgrade, DOCSBarcelona, Verzio Budapest, Message2Man in St. Petersburg and DOKLeipzig. Teaches at the Zelig Documentary School in Bolzano Italy.

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