Immersive, realistic introduction to Nagorno Karabakh
First, I'm neither of Armenian nor Azeri descent. Point of view is important when talking about Nagorno Karabakh, which was in the news before I saw this film at the virtual AFIFEST earlier in 2020, and afterwards. This is a territory in conflict between Armenians and Azeris, a conflict that you will appreciate in many ways if you see this film. But it is not a war film. It is really about the kind of differences that arise when larger political units use ethnicity and territory as elements in their larger conflicts. The result is that good people are crushed between rocks and hard places. Think of the conflicts over Jerusalem.
Nagorno Karabakh is a beautiful, mountainous, not too urban, but not really backward place. At the moment I write, it is populated by Armenians who won a war over it (not counting a part of it which was retrieved by Azerbaijan in warfare after this film was made.) In fact, the film begins with the protagonist, a reviewer of airport requirements, taking the only access road into it--a rugged, twisty road that was near the post-film fighting. You will appreciate the geography behind the news reports after you see this film, but you'll also appreciate the people who live there only a short distance away from those who want to displace them. The protagonist is foreign, there to perform a technical review of the safety of opening a mothballed airport which would provide safer and easier access between Nagorno Karabakh and the outside world. You are immersed in his work and life until he renders his verdict. This is a beautifully-made, touching, and explanatory film that I will remember for a long time. Its imperfections are minor.
0 of 0 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this