Archive of films Hostage / Girov

2005, 95 min

Section: East of the West - Competition
Year: 2006

Eldar Guliyev, director of over fifteen films and documentaries, offers a different take on the conflict in Karabakh which broke out between the Azerbaijanis and the Armenians at the end of the 1980s. Women and children are unwilling participants in this war; their husbands and fathers are its hostages.


During the late 1980s and early 1990s the Armenian minority in Karabakh attempted to break away from Azerbaijan, one of the former Soviet republics. Overnight these former neighbours became enemies, and simple village folk were suddenly made hostages in a complex power game. One of the Azerbaijani villages right on the border is home to the family of the peasant farmer Kerim, who has just been captured by the Armenians. The village council decides to take an Armenian in order to arrange a hostage exchange. They imprison the wounded man in the barn next to Kerim’s house, where his wife and three children desperately await the husband’s return. The captive from the other side of the border finds himself in exactly the same situation – he, too, has three children, he finds it hard to scrape a living together, he has never done anything to harm anyone and, like Kerim, he just wants to go back home. But life in Karabakh is far more complex now. Blood calls for blood…

About the director

Eldar Guliyev (b. 1941, Baku, Azerbaijan) studied film at Moscow University until 1967 and worked as a director for the Azerbaijanfilm studio in Baku. He has made over fifteen films and documentaries, including coproductions with Mosfilm and Barrandov (Favorable Wind, 1974). Select filmography: The Bay of Joy (Bukhta radosti, 1977), Bábek (1979), Nizámí (1982), The Legend of the Silver Lake (Legenda serebryannogo ozera, 1984), Seaside Trip (Zagorodnaya progulka, 1986), The Sabotage (1989) and How Beautiful Is the World (1998).


Moscow Avenue 1, AZ 1012, Baku
Tel: +994 12 430 17 91
Fax: +994 12 431 00 10

About the film

Color, 35 mm
International premiere

Section: East of the West - Competition
Director: Eldar Guliyev
Screenplay: Eldar Guliyev, Natig Rasul-zade
Dir. of Photography: Rafig Guliyev
Music: Siyavoush Kerimi
Producer: Khamiz Muradov
Production: Azerbaijanfilm Studio
Cast: Gyuliar Nabiyeva, Gurban Ismailov, Vidadi Aliyev
Contact: Azerbaijanfilm


Eldar Guliyev

Film Director


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