Set in the Georgian capital of Tbilisi in 1992, where a civil war rages after the collapse of the Soviet Union, Nana Ekvtimishvili & Simon Grob's In Bloom tells the story of two young girls, Natia and Eka, inseparable friends who spend nearly every waking moment together. These two woman are on the edge of adulthood, surrounded by mayhem that ranges from family dysfunction to violent outbursts on the street that are viewed as merely a daily occurrence. When Natia is given a gun as a present from a male admirer, the girls begin to feel more in control of the world around them, but they soon discover the error in viewing violence as a solution to a problem. In Bloom is a fascinating coming of age story set in an incredibly bleak environment where oppression, violence, and delusion are commonplace. The filmmakers create a grim world around Natia and Eka, where male oppression over woman is a matter-of-fact, capturing the overall numbness of being a woman as they search for their identity in a society that constantly threatens them with violence. The narrative unfolds in a way that intentionally only gives the viewer half of the story, staying solely in the psyche of these two young girls. While both Natia and Eka struggle to find themselves, I personally found Eka's story to be incredibly compelling. Through subtle storytelling, In Bloom captures a young woman who begins to understand the significance of the brutality around her. With the discovery that her father was arrested for a violent act himself, Eka recognizes the ugliness of violence on all things, beginning to grasp the horror of violence in a world where it's so commonplace. Nana Ekvtimishvili & Simon Grob's In Bloom is a haunting evocation of the importance of ident
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