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It’s night time and the lights burn bright in the apartments of a tower block housing estate in Baku. Myriad individual destinies are unfolding here: we zoom in to focus on those of Samir, Fidan and their 18-year-old son Machmud. While Samir has surrendered to a sort of lethargy, Fidan is attempting to get new bearings and Machmud is planning on moving out. Harbouring different ambitions and desires for freedom, the three pursue their own parallel lives while showing practically zero emotion: affectionate interaction is kept to a bare minimum and attempts at conversation are almost always brusquely dismissed. No one has time for the others here – that is, until Fidan disappears one day during a trip to the beach. Using wonderfully subtle images, director Elmar Imanov paints an intimate family portrait set in contemporary Azerbaijan. Time and again, the camera lingers long on the individual figures, creating harmoniously illuminated tableaus that bring the main characters to the fore and lend them emotional depth in spite of their superficial reticence. Imanov and producer Eva Blondiau have succeeded in realising an astonishing project from a country that is largely underrepresented when it comes to cinema.
Born in 1985 in Baku, Imanov immigrated to Germany in 1998. He studied film directing at the ifs internationale filmschule köln. He participated in productions and shoots of numerous short films in Azerbaijan and Germany. In 2012, he graduated with his thesis film THE SWING OF THE COFFIN MAKER, which won the Student Oscar and over 35 awards worldwide. With producer Eva Blondiau he founded the production company COLOR OF MAY in 2013, producing TORN, which had its world premiere at the “Directors’ Fortnight” in Cannes.
2010 // ICH BIN SCHAUSPIELER (short)
2012 // DIE SCHAUKEL DES SARGMACHERS / THE SWING OF THE COFFIN MAKER (short)
2014 // TORN (short)
2019 // END OF SEASON