kelpiez’s review published on Letterboxd:
I watched this film three times in the space of a week and studied it meticulously for an essay, but this did not actually put me off at all. If anything, Repentance is one of those films I could rewatch countless times and still find new things about it to fall in love with again each time.
Abuladze’s surrealism is so crucial to film in years to come and draws subtly upon many of his predecessors such as Buñuel.
Makharadze is terrifying as Varlam, but brilliant, and his performance entirely displays the horrors of dictatorships. The combination of a story of small town Georgians facing their totalitarian, Soviet past and Aravidze’s use of surreal imaging and terrifying character construction through a very intricately framed narrative is what makes Repentance so unique. I would recommend watching it more than once and preferably not when you are unwell. I was ill when I first watched this film and I woke up the next day thinking it had been an incredibly vivid fever dream.