When a war is officially declared to be over, every aspect of social life is supposed to get back to normal as quickly as possible, only questions of victory or defeat matter. But for those who return, the torture often just begins upon arrival, being confronted to a world which they do not belong anymore, a world which offers no place for „war heroes“ in times of in peace.
In After Party / After Life, a father returns from war to meet his alienated son and the ‘peaceful’ world that does not belong to him anymore. The scraps of the war images haunt his mind. His life turns into unending struggle with sobriety, where only drugs and alcohol can lead him to the moments of brief and delusional comfort. The people closest to him suffer from his unmotivated attacks of violence. Eventually, abandoned by them, the nameless ex-hero is trapped in solitude, where he cannot confront his deteriorated life in the war torn country.a
The Georgian director and author Data Tavadze creates a story narrated by two voices from different generations, fragments of five interviews he conducted with Georgian war veterans and their sons merge into one biography. He ruthlessly sheds light on what happens when victims of war lose all orientation, when there is no space to mourn, when subtle and often unnoticed symptoms of creeping madness lead to a precarious life in a world which just wants to forget.
The Conscience of Words
By Susan Sontag
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Festival: WAR OR PEACE – CROSSROADS OF HISTORY 1918 / 2018