Eye For Film >> Movies >> Goleshovo (2008) Film Review
Reviewed by: Amber Wilkinson
The sensibility and humanism that documentarian Ilian Metev displays in his debut feature Sofia's Last Ambulance is also evident in his 2008 debut short. Made while he was a student at the National Film and Television School, Goleshovo takes its name from a small Bulgarian town, inhabited by just 59 souls and where - if the age of the protagonists in this film is anything to go by - the only way for those numbers to go is down.
As with his later film, the focus is on the quotidian as he watches several of the women - most of them seem to have outlived their men - and the community's male priest, as they go about the day to day. He begins with a straight-to-camera chat with octagenarian Evdokia Kuleva, who talks about the adventure of leaving the village for another one for the first time. Her excitement at the memory is self-evident and she twinkles along, considering the interconnectedness of the modern world. Although she says: "Those who live in the woods know only trees." the course of the documentary shows that the people who live in the town have limited experience of travel but it doesn't mean they are narrow minded.
Metev isn't scared to hold a shot, letting silence unfold as often as conversation and though people occasionally seem to roll their eyes at the camera, this adds to the charm. He also retreats to a respectful distance at times and, thereby, captures moments of suprising authenticity. There may be only 59 people here, but Metev shows a world in miniature - from the comedy of loading a donkey to the tragedy of death and, above all, the resilience of a community that cares about its members.Reviewed on: 14 Oct 2014