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Repentance (Monanieba, Pokayanie, Покаяние, მონანიება) DVD-9
Posted By : Avax | Date : 21 Dec 2021 17:43:00 | Comments : 13
Frankly speaking: never, and no film did not make me such a strong impression
(I left the theater and I was shaking – literally). But. First, it was in the early 90-ies.
Secondly, I was a young man with a Soviet mentality. And for this young man's movie was an absolute shock.
Therefore, it is difficult to say what you see in the film. However – I recommend.

Repentance (Monanieba, Pokayanie, Покаяние, მონანიება) DVD-9
click to enlarge

Repentance (Monanieba, Pokayanie, Покаяние, მონანიება)
DVD-9 | PAL 720 x 576 (4:3) MPEG2 | Audio: Dolby AC3, 6 Channels, 448 Kbps | 2h:24min | 8,01 Gb | Cover, Disc (400 dpi) | Video menu: Ru, En, Fr
Language: Russian, Georgian, French | Subtitles: Russian, English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Portugese, Dutch, Swedish, Hebrew, Arabic, Chinese, Japanese
IMDB: 7.5/10 | Genre: Philosophical Drama, Art House, Allegory | Studio: Qartuli Pilmi (USSR, Georgian SSR) | 1984 Year | Director: Tengiz Abuladze; Writers: Tengiz Abuladze, Nana Dzhanelidze
Cast: Avtandil Makharadze, Ya Ninidze, Zeinab Botsvadze, Ketevan Abuladze, Edisher Giorgobiani, Kakhi Kavsadze, Merab Ninidze, Nino Zaqariadze

“I First learned of this film as an accidental find at the local video rental shop in the foriegn film section. Now it's a top ten favorite film of mine for several reasons.
Stealthily made for Georgian/Russian television under Soviet era rule, it was “shelved” until 1986 when glasnost allowed it's release, just a couple of years prior to the breakup of the Soviet Union. Anyway, here it's shown in Fullscreen presentation as it was made, hence there is no such thing as a Widescreen version. Running time is complete (unedited) at about 154 minutes.

Repentance is a story within a story (three generations) which is also book-ended by a main charachter's brief musings leaving the viewer to wonder was this a momentary daydream or did all this actually happen? This does not give away the story or any suspense whatsoever.
Because of the multi-layered story, multiple charachters and involved plot most viewers including Georgian/Russian literates will be a bit lost on first viewing. So far I've watched it perhaps 9 or 10 times over the last decade and I'm still unraveling much of the story, charachters and dialogue. Now that I have it on DVD it will be viewed and disected over and over.

It's a complicated blend of social commentary, political nightmare, spiritual awareness, family disintegration, artistic/human freedom, surrealism, and even brief moments of (black)comedy.
The film's overall flow is like a dark drama and part Euro artfilm perhaps due to the surreal scenes and the unrushed filming/editing. This is not Hollywood product!
There's realy little or no “action” per se, and despite there being no blatant visual violence (or sex) I always leave this film as though I've lived through a mass of brutality and executions. Repentance carries some obvious political messages but it really asks the viewer to draw thier own conclusions and to think for thyself!

A fantastic, dark and thoughtful film that is as relevant and timeless as the viewer allows or chooses it to be.”Amazon.com

Repentance (Monanieba, Pokayanie, Покаяние, მონანიება) DVD-9
click to enlarge

Repentance (Monanieba, Pokayanie, Покаяние, მონანიება) DVD-9
click to enlarge

“This wonderful Georgian film emerged from the last years of the Soviet regime, but seems to have disappeared without trace. The final film of a trilogy by the veteran film-maker Tengiz Abuladze, it portrays a composite monster, Varlam (Hitler moustache, Mussolini shirt & braces, Stalin boots, Beria pince-nez) and his equally grotesque son Abel, both played by the same actor.

The film has a surrealist, dreamlike quality about it, framed by initial and final scenes in a cake-shop and with police almost comic in medieval armour. The main actions which initiate the plot are surrealist with the repeated exhumation of Varlam's corpse. The two monstrous central characters are no more than mayors of a small Georgian town – but there is nothing comic about their actions and the reign of terror they bring to the community. The elements of tyranny are revealed economically, with hints of atrocities and disappearances but only one brief torture scene. The overall message is that of personal responsibility. The tyrannical regime is not an anonymous bureaucracy but the deliberate creation of evil men. And the final repentance is a horrific recognition of those responsibilities. An unmissable film, beautifully made and superbly acted – if you can find it.”IMDB.com

Repentance (Monanieba, Pokayanie, Покаяние, მონანიება) DVD-9
click to enlarge

Repentance (Monanieba, Pokayanie, Покаяние, მონანიება) DVD-9
click to enlarge

“This hard to find film called 'Repentance' is one of the most mindboggling and brilliant films I have ever seen. Right now I cannot write an in depth review about it because I am busy with other things. But, if one can find this film, buy it because it is not that easy to find. You will get your money's worth. The main actor in this film gives one of the most awesome performances I have seen.”Amazon.com

Repentance (Monanieba, Pokayanie, Покаяние, მონანიება) DVD-9
click to enlarge

Repentance (Monanieba, Pokayanie, Покаяние, მონანიება) DVD-9
click to enlarge

“For Georgian Cinema, every film of T.Abuladze was a landmark. Each project was at least the most typical if not the best film of its time. Visually they all are made in different style and form defined by (or sometimes defining) the trends in the contemporary Georgian cinema.

(spoilers ahead!)

The major achievement of Tengiz Abuladze himself is a trilogy The Plead, Tree of Wishes and Repentance. These films got a wide critical acclaim and Repentance even became the major hit in USSR. Many Soviet and Post-Soviet Critics and viewers consider it to be the best Soviet film of 80-ies. The phrases and notions from this film became proverbs and are quoted everywhere, general concepts “Repentance” and “the Way to the Temple” where over-abused by soviet media for over a decade. But... some foreign critics were much less agitated by the film. Leonard Maltin even found it boring (while in USSR the film was often criticized for being too entertaining!!!). On the contrary film by Nikita Mikhalkhov on a similar subject – “Burnt by the Sun” was very well received in the west, while in former USSR it was simply excoriated by critics as a shallow Hollywood-oriented Soap and a definite cash-in on the glory of Repentance. Some foreign critics and viewers didn't understand anything about the Repentance (which is full of symbols and allusions, some of them are uniquely Georgian) apart from the Stalin criticism. Here are some facts about the film that foreigners mostly do not know.

1. The story: is a real one – Beria (the darkest evil character of Stalin epoque crushed a well-known painter after he attempted to protect the Metechi Temple (a trade mark of Tbilisi-capital of Georgia), that Beria planned to destroy to build some monument. As always everyone who opposed Beria were arrested and mostly executed. But the Temple – symbol of spirituality, human values, heart of a nation survived.

2. Due to this the prologue and epilogue of the film are very important – (by the way there are 2 time periods in the film – the Past – Stalin Time, totalitarian regime, the Present – Brejnev Period, so called Zastoi (standstill, stagnation period) – time of conformism when everything became seemingly all right) – so the prologue and epilogue is the picture of the soviet Zastoi of 70-ies – everything seems to be all right and a child of family destroyed by totalitarian regime makes cakes with beautiful but fake temples on them, eventually the cake is eaten be a dirty little bearded man admiring the totalitarian past and speaking about Varlam Aravidze (read Stalin, Beria and all other monsters from the Past) with admiration, and the cake-maker (the victim of Varlam) says nothing and just imagines what could she do to remind people of truth. But this is just her imagination, people are conformists they need no truth and only old vagabond woman searches for the Way to the Tample.

3. The Axis of the film is Aravidze family (Aravidze in Georgian means Nobody's Son): we see 3 generations: Varlam – (the totalitarian past), his son Abel and His Wife – (the “innocent” conformist Present,) and Tornike – the Grandson (the future that finally must take the responsibility for the crimes of past).

4. But this “taking the responsibility for the crimes of past” is a controversial issue that's why everything happens only in the imagination of the cake-maker – becouse the degree and a form of repentance, and the repentance itself is a very complex and painful matter; and yes, the Skeleton in the Closet affects and punishes not Varlam who commits the crime but Abel who tries to hush it up and Tornike who is among few really “innocent” characters of the film. Digging out the corpse of Varlam (the Past) – is this a solution? The authors leave the question to the viewers.

5. Some scenes need explanation:

The funeral may look grotesque, but in fact its pretty realistic and is more a humoristic critique of Georgian obsession with ceremonies Georgian Cemeteries are really the monuments of human vanity – huge, with excessive use of marble, granites and other materials. Putting cage on the grave of Varlam is symbolic, but in general the episode depicts how unholy the sacred places have become in Soviet Union (Georgia), the episode with church shows the same – the church is transformed into Power Station. Episode in the greenhouse is a Naked Gun-like literal depiction of the expression “Under the Cap” (to have someone under control). During his “Inauguration Speech” Varlam makes a statement that became quintessential when depicting Stalin regime. He cites Confucius “It's hard to catch cat in the dark room, especially if it is not there” and paraphrases it “We Will Catch the Cat in the Dark Room, Even if It's not There”. For those who have little idea of Stalinism the accusation for “making a tunnel from Bombay to London” may sound forced but in fact its very realistic and sounds rather tame next to some other accusations based on which millions of people were killed. Episode with Goddess of Justice has dual symbolism: First, the goddess has become a lady of dubious reputation playing piano with a stalinistic prosecutor, second, the actress making cameo appearance here appeared in the first part of the trilogy as well (the Plea) there she was a symbol of beauty and purity.

6. The cast is “all star” (of Georgian cinema of course). Many viewers even didn't noticed that father and son – Varlam and Abel are acted by the same actor!!! The old lady at the end of the film looking for a temple, is last screen appearance of Veriko Anjaparidze, perhaps the greatest Georgian actress. By the way her character is obvious “older” Pupala from the “Tree of Wishes”, there this character was acted by S. Chiaureli – daughter of Veriko.”IMDB.com

Repentance (Monanieba, Pokayanie, Покаяние, მონანიება) DVD-9
click to enlarge

Repentance (Monanieba, Pokayanie, Покаяние, მონანიება) DVD-9
click to enlarge

“My only complaint about Tengiz Abuladze's “Repentance” (English title) is that I am uncertain what was real and what was fantasy. However, since this was undoubtedly his intention, I cannot properly call it a complaint. Outside of David Lynch films, I have never seen more perfectly executed dream imagery than that of “Repentance”; the beauty of these sequences is accentuated by the surreal atmosphere of the various dreamers' waking lives. The cast is uniformly excellent, the premise unique, and much of the dialogue resonates with beauty, despair and universal truth, often mingled with humor. No character is utterly devoid of sympathy, nor is any character entirely sympathetic. All is ambiguous, just as it is in our own so-called «reality». ”IMDB.com

Repentance (Monanieba, Pokayanie, Покаяние, მონანიება) DVD-9
click to enlarge

Repentance (Monanieba, Pokayanie, Покаяние, მონანიება) DVD-9
click to enlarge

Special DVD features (Russian, English, French, Spanish, Italian, Dutch):

• Documentaries about Lavrentiy Beria and actress Veriko Andzhaparidze
• Filmographies:
    Tengiz Abuladze (director, scriptwriter)
    Nana Dzhanelidze (scriptwriter)
    Rezo Kveselava (scriptwriter)
    Mikhail Agranovich (camerman)
    Giorgi Miqeladze (production designer)
    Avtandil Makharadze (actor)
    Zeinab Botsvadze (actress)
    Veriko Andjaparidze (actress)
    Merab Ninidze (actor)
    Kakhi Kavsadze (actor)
    Ya Ninidze (actress)
    Edisher Giorgobiani (actor)
    Rezo Esadze (actor)
• Photo album
• Coming on DVD

Download «Repentance (Monanieba, Pokayanie)» (Click to see Links)



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Posted By: eekastar Date: 21 Dec 2021 17:18:24
Your contributions are very much appreciated, it is not often one comes across Russian movies with (among many other languages) Dutch subs!

Thank you!
Posted By: Avax Date: 21 Dec 2021 17:41:16
2eekastar: I am trying to find the releases with maximum number of subtitles – I think it is very important that the cultural exchange does not interfere with language barriers.

• According to the poll, 18-19 February 2006, 47% of Russia believe Stalin's role in the history of positive.

• Rating Russia's national on-line project “Name of Russia” (2008) has shown that the most popular people in Russia (for its entire history!) – Stalin and Lenin.


I am afraid that it will all end very badly ...


P.S. Для соотечественников: вот, почитайте – http://drugoi.livejournal.com/3124111.html. Сегодняшнее.
Posted By: miguel_asl Date: 21 Dec 2021 17:51:38
Hi. I want know if you can up this movie through megaupload?

I am curious about the film because I dont know anything about russia and his history.

I am from Mexico, so will be nice see the movie to meet the art work that had be done in your region.

If there is links of the ripped movie, please send me through mp for dont break the rules.

Thanks for sharing.
Posted By: Avax Date: 21 Dec 2021 18:17:24

2miguel_asl: Unfortunately, I can not through Megaupload – I do not have an account. =((
Posted By: Avax Date: 21 Dec 2021 19:39:00

By the way. Two days ago all the state TV-channels of Russia have shown here, this incredible report (I also saw it):


At the same time started a big debate about the role of Stalin (on television and the Internet in Russia). In addition, at the same time, died odious singer reforms of the USSR – Yegor Gaidar (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Egor_Gaydar).

Finally – just now I decided to publish this movie.

Posted By: avaxphil Date: 21 Dec 2021 20:20:07
Can someone post a quality rip 1400MB or so with english subtitles? Thanks for the upload anyway!

Posted By: itsartolie Date: 22 Dec 2021 07:40:07
Many, many thanks Avax for your ongoing effort to provide us with food for thought. Of course, to us 'westerners' the crimes of Beria and Stalin were well known years before the collapse of the Soviet

regime. What I find really shocking is your own admission that when you first saw this film you were a young man with a Soviet mentality. I cannot even begin to think how disillusioned one must feel when

the value system of his upbringing falls into pieces. At any rate, the Russian people have passed through hell during these last 100 years and one can only hope that this great nation finds its footing

quickly! Best wishes for the holidays :-)
Posted By: lukashi Date: 22 Dec 2021 09:21:54

your (although very interesting)films are generally dubbed (you can't hear the original sound track)
can someone tell me how to remove this?
Posted By: Avax Date: 22 Dec 2021 15:47:14


Why “you can't hear the original sound track”? It even can. Kindly see:


Formally, the original track – Georgian. However, in the Soviet film distribution «Repentance» was presented in Russian language.

That is: if you select a Russian soundtrack, you get the same impression that all the Soviet people.

P.S. This soundtrack is well hear the voices of the actors; the text reads man with a Georgian accent (and reads very well).


Oh, why I did not teach English language? It is hard to explain their thoughts online translator ... But I'll try. %)

I saw this film shortly after the demobilization of the Soviet army – that is, I was about 21-22 years. I have already started to study at the Moscow Historical-Archival Institute.

My family has suffered from repression – my great-grandfather was shot in the 30-ies (he took part in the White Guard plot against the Soviet power) – although the family is rarely discussed.

That is: something I knew.

And! Despite this, I was – Soviet fool. Stupid and aggressive. Ready to kill for the Soviet regime. Do not listen to any arguments.

Zombie. Therefore, the film was a shock.

Now I am an adult and understand that “brainwashed” is not only authoritarian regimes – the brain washed all countries, is the foundation of their existence.

But better to be liberal than the Communists – there are no two opinions.

P.S. Thank you for your kind words and wishes! I am happy that people like you – interested in our modest project, and that you are with us. Thank you! Happy holidays! =)
Posted By: silverzam Date: 22 Dec 2021 16:11:17
Thanks my friend. Tengiz Abuladze, what a great Georgian film maker! Will be grateful if you can share the other two films from this trilogy.
A million thanks from the bottom of my heart for sharing.

We have already heard about many things about your country.There was also malicious propaganda from Uncle Sam till the end of cold war. . You are a brave people. Leaders are the same everywhere.They can manipulate any 'ism' to their advantage.
Posted By: Avax Date: 22 Dec 2021 16:50:08


Thank you for your kind words, my dear friend!

I will certainly try to publish the remaining two films!

However, the next in the queue (coming soon): http://ruscico.com/dvd.php?lang=en&dvd=79

Frankly: Eisenstein's films did not give me pleasure. But (imho) – people need to see them.
Posted By: Da_Cast Date: 22 Dec 2021 22:18:09
REMEBER! This movie is a FICTION! Just like "Terminator" or "Proud and Prejudice", but pretending to be philosophical.
It's no way a historical retrospective of Soviet Union. Just a FICTION!
Posted By: itsartolie Date: 23 Dec 2021 07:07:47
Dear Avax,

No need for a translator when one speaks the truth from the heart (and with great courage if I may add) like you do, your message came out loud and clear. My wish for the holidays is let us all try to

clear our minds and souls from all brainwashing and see things in their real perspective. To this end, I can't think of a better place than this wonderful site you have here enabling the free flow of

culture and ideas, may Avaxhome prosper!

PS Da_Cast is right, it might be fiction (all art resides in the mind of its creator after all) but the crimes these people committed were very real (maybe he's suggesting that Beria was some kind of Soviet "Terminator"? LOL) ;-)

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