Discovering Georgian Cinema: “Molba” Vedreba aka The Plea (1967)



“The Beautiful Nature of Man Can Never Die”  – Vazha Pshavela

The Plea or Molba is one of those films that must be seen by anyone who believes in the importance of fighting against evil. Fighting does mean to take a gun and go after anyone whom you think is evil, but, rather to simply be as good as possible so as not to become like the one you think is evil. In Tengiz Abuladze`s film the subject of the good and evil of the warrior brings to light a global issue, which is relevant today. He makes a few important statements that make us think, ‘what if everyone stopped fighting against evil; what if everyone gave up on the idea of stopping the bad things happening around them? How far would we go to simply live our lives without caring about anyone else but ourselves? This is what causes the Poet to think, when he finally realizes that he no longer can bear the graves, corpses and death around him, because of his idea of the inconceivability of evil…

From the opening scene of Molba, evil, or the devil, is introduced to the viewer as the face of a man who hides in the shadows and appears only when he wants to swallow the beauty, the purity, and kindness of the world shown to us as the face if a young lady in white. This is when we hear the voice of the Poet, who appears to be talking to God, claiming that he knows Him well, even though he has never met him in person. Then, the Poet concentrates his attention on evil and he asks him to disappear. The Poet then continues his journey, and on the way hears the arguments of those who want to know, if he stops the people from fighting and killing evil, what then should they do with those who have kidnapped people and have killed their wives and children?


Abuladze uses a harsh dark landscape in his film to integrate his characters into the environment, where we watch their confusion grow with overwhelming images. Abuladze uses his technique to show how a moment of tenderness for a human being can become disastrous, when the evil that used to hide in the shadows appears to destroy everything good that human nature has to offer. This is what makes the Poet finally realize that the only way to stop the digging of more graves, and the death of innocent people, is to continue his quest as long as possible to prevent the world from being swallowed by darkness.

Molba is a pure masterpiece by all means. It`s terrifyingly relevant and dangerously scary, while in the meantime, a stunningly beautiful film which shows us how one man`s decision is more than enough to understand that while evil exists, good will always be around to fight against it. Unfortunately, the scale of bad and good in this film is quite tremendous, and this will certainly make everyone think, ‘is this not the world we live in? The world where some of us must adapt quickly as society demands, forgetting to stay true to ourselves?’ In Molba the subject touched upon is not just about fighting against something dangerous that can absorb the human soul, but ourselves – portraying how resisting against evil is the real victory, where the best part of human nature will triumph once again and prove that the beautiful nature of man indeed can never die.


Note: This film will be projected on 35mm, which will allow everyone to experience the beauty of the film the way it was envisioned by Tengiz Abuladze. For more info, click here.


Saturday, May 9th, at 7:00 PM

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