‘My Happy Family’ takes us to Tbilisi (Georgia)

From the New Directors/New Films (2017) Website: The second feature by Nana Ekvtimishvili and Simon Gross subtly and sensitively follows a middle-aged woman as she aims to leave her husband and escape from the multi-generational living situation she shares with her aging parents, the aforementioned husband, her son, her daughter, and her daughter’s cheating live-in boyfriend. Lacking both personal space and free time, she breaks out on her own, building a new life for herself piece by piece while contemplating the family structure she has left behind. My Happy Family is a funny, perceptive, and sociologically rich work about the myriad roles we play in life and the obligations we endlessly strive to fulfill.


Rating from FF2 Editor-in-Chief Jan Lisa Huttner: 4/5

Manana, a teacher in Tibilisi, Georgia — once part of the former Soviet Union — has had it! So she moves out of her claustrophobic apartment, leaving a large, 3-generation family behind. Alone for probably the first time in her life, Manana savors her privacy. Of course, they continue to pull her into their problems, but after every visit, she closes the door behind her and returns to her small hideaway.

Ia Shugliashvili gives a terrific performance as Manana. Kudos to Nana Ekvtimishvili from Georgia for writing the screenplay which she directed with her husband Simon Gross (who is German).

© Jan Lisa Huttner (3/23/17) FF2 Media

Rating from FF2 Contributor Isabell Höjman: 4/5

The acting is flawless, and you feel like a part of the family drama for two intense hours. The fact that Manana refuses to explain why she wants to leave her family throughout the film is brilliant. The film left me emotional and with existential thoughts.

© Isabell Höjman (3/23/17) FF2 Media

Still photos found online. Go to IMDb’s page for My Happy Family for additional information about the cast and crew.

Photo with Simon Gross at the Walter Reade Theatre. Unfortunately Nana Ekvtimishvili was unable to make it to NYC for the Q&A.

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