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Review of the film “Raving Riot: Rave at Parliament”

Raving riot: Parliament rave (2019)
Raving riot
documentary
Director: Stepan Polivanov
Premiere: October 24, 2019
In May 2018, anti-drug raids in two clubs are held in Tbilisi. One of them is Bassiani, which earned the title of the local Berghain and allowed to talk about the emergence of a new generation of a whole youth culture in Georgia. An attempt by the authorities to invade this new sphere yielded a completely unexpected result: for two days a massive unceasing rave took place near the building of the local parliament, the state backed up and the mask shows in the clubs ended.

Frame from the film “Raving Riot: Rave at the Parliament”
In 2018, the 25-year-old film director Stepan Polivanov, who shot the documentary “Turn The Record” about the culture of vinyl and music in the USSR and Russia a couple of years ago, ended up in Georgia and became a direct witness to the surge of youth protests, strongly insisted on techno-culture. Here it will be appropriate to screw in the common phrase “he was at the right time in the right place.” And the eye of the beginning filmmaker quickly grasped the main image and conflict, from which it is quite possible to dance to the big picture. Brightly dressed youth, challenging the monotonous officialdom. Everything is clear and understandable, it would seem, but erroneous movements are quite possible. When politics intervenes in dancing, it’s very easy to do too much pa. Polivanov managed not to commit it. But he also failed to make some outstanding and technically complex tricks.

Frame from the film “Raving Riot: Rave at the Parliament”
At the beginning of the picture, one of the heroes throws a phrase explaining a lot about the lifestyle of Georgian youth (as well as many others): “Day is for those people who are afraid. When they go to bed, we take to the streets. ” Most of the film is exactly what happens at night. Young animals look absolutely natural in this nocturne. And they say basically the right thing, explaining their position. And they are also doing quite the right thing – they kiss, dance and try to come off with might and main contrary to the impending storm.

Frame from the film “Raving Riot: Rave at the Parliament”
The first thing you should not expect from “Rave at the Parliament” is parallels with the protests in Russia (not too successful). Despite the fact that we systematically and almost synchronously carry out drug trafficking in clubs (just remember the drug trafficking in Rabitsa, which led to the closure of the club, the cancellation of the Outline festival, the closure of the Arma17 club, and this only applies to Moscow). The director even removed a passage from the final version of the film in which one of the characters says that he will never speak Russian, because the Russians do not know how to fight, and he does not respect it. If the picture had a reproachful shade and carried the message “look as it should”, it would be too one-sided. Those who need it will understand that everything seems to be adults and prosarennye people.

What did Polivanov lack? Latitudes of the view and picture of the world. The film lasts only an hour, and is made in the genre of a video essay about the protests that are taking place right now in very many parts of the world. There are plenty of such documentary films; they are constantly present at film screenings, because each person has a movie camera near each barricade. There is a lack of a distinct portrait of those on the opposite side. It is understandable why: it is unlikely that any of the senior officials would begin to communicate with a 25-year-old Russian guy on camera. But I would like to get a clearer image of the enemy, this is an important guarantee of the success of a creative work. And I would like to dive into a deeper analysis of the national characteristics of the riot. There are references to the events of 1989 in the film, and the trend of neo-fascism, into which present-day Georgia is quite willingly slipping, is somehow casually forwarded. But after the not yet made, but nevertheless rather serious accusations that the Russians do not know how to fight, I would like to hear successful historical examples of the uprisings committed by the nation of winemakers and poets. Instead, we are given an interview with an artist who records 20 different kinds of crap (literally) on audio. Ok, let’s say this is also an option. But the question is where.

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