AMERIKATSI means “The American ” in Armenian and it was the prestige Opening Film at GAIFF, 2022 and was screened in the Calabasas Film Festival on Sept. 23,2022.
This is a Dramatic Comedy that celebrates the human spirit and it’s ability to find hope during times of isolation and suffering. It is based to a certain extent on actual events, of an American based Armenian Genocide survivor who returns to Armenia in 1948 when the country was under Soviet domination and known as the Armenian Soviet Socialist Republic, ASSR.
As a young boy, Charlie escaped the genocide of the Armenians in 1915-21. Now, after many years in exile he sits in a Soviet prison. He is soon imprisoned for “western leanings” where from his prison cell through a hole in the wall he is able to observe a married couple in an apartment next to the prison. This ongoing voyeurism restores his will to live as he begins to identify strongly with them. He shares their private life, eats with them, laughs, cries, dances with them, and discovers the Armenian culture he has never known. The odd twist is that the man turns out to be a guard at the prison which will eventually lead to startling complications when he finally meets them.
The Director Michael Goorjian (1971, USA) an American actor, film-maker and writer, himself an Amerikatsi of Armenian ancestry (but only on the paternal side) plays the central role of Charlie, the imprisoned repatriate. He avows that his purpose with Amerikatsi is not just to tickle the ribs of the local audience here, but to reach out to Diaspora Armenians as well, while at the same time introducing Non-Armenian audiences to Armenian culture. For his supporting role in the US TV film David’s Mother (1994) he won an Emmy Award. His directorial debut came in 2004 with Illusion.
Shooting, which took place in Armenia at the height of the Covid plague, was interrupted several times but was completed by ingenious manipulation of the obstacles involved. The showing of the final result here was the world premiere. The question now is – what next? Goorjian is still looking for a competent international distributor and also has high hopes that the Armenian film establishment will see fit to submit Amerikatsi as the Armenian foreign film entry in the 2023 Oscar derby. Read more here
SCREENINGS & INFO
07.10.2022 at 15:45 Cinemaxx 2
For more information and Tickets please visit www.filmfesthamburg.de