Cold as marble

az po grób

Original title: Mərmər soyuğu
Genre: Drama / Thriller / Black comedy
Director: Asif Rustamov
Country: Azerbaijan, France
Year of production: 2022
Czas: 88 min

Awards and nominations:
2022 Eurasia International Film Festival in Almaty: Best
2022 Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival: Best Actor
2022 International Film Festival

In Asif Rustamov’s second feature, drama, a genre typical of his work, is enriched with elements of thriller and black comedy. The protagonist (played by Elshen Esgerov) is a frustrated and unfulfilled artist working as a tombstone engraver. He’s entangled in a relationship with an attractive museum guide (Natavan Abbasli) who is married to an often-absent businessman. This routine is broken by a sudden reappearance of the protagonist’s father (Gurban Ismailov), released from prison after doing time for the murder of his wife. This intriguing film, in which each character has something to hide, is brilliantly acted. Ismailov, awarded at Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival for “his powerful and nuanced performance as the mean and manipulative father”, is especially convincing. It’s also difficult to imagine different actors in the roles of the forbidden lovers, even though uncommonly looking Esgerov and exceptionally beautiful Abbasli had been hired just under a month before the shooting began. The original cast had resigned at the last moment, probably because of the erotic scenes. These are indeed rather explicit for Azerbaijani cinema, known for its faithfulness to Muslim tradition and avoidance of nudity. But this makes “Cold As Marble” all the more fascinating.
Author: Piotr Dobry

Asif Rustamov – one of the most important young Azerbaijani directors, specializing in psychological dramas. He gained fame as a screenwriter of Ilgar Najaf’s films (“Pomegranate Orchard”, “Red Garden”, “Sughra’s Sons”). He debuted as a director with “Down the River”. “Cold As Marble”, awarded at Eurasia International Film Festival in Almaty, is his second feature.
A father figure is a recurring motif in his films.






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