“Think about what kind of an example you are for your sister. What will be your reputation and what you want to do with your life. Am I being clear? I expect you to change fundamentally.”

Who cares if the old people moan about her short-cut T-shirts and ripped jeans? Lora loves Todor, and Todor loves her – that’s the only thing that matters. She doesn’t care about the gossip, or that she gets in trouble for coming home too late. But when her father suddenly dies, everything changes. It’s no longer so easy to ignore her family and the neighbours. Do they really believe that her father’s death is God’s way of punishing her? And even Todor has started to avoid her. Life in the village and her role there seem to be more and more oppressive. Portraying the customs and traditions of a village set in the breathtaking landscape of rural Bulgaria, Zhaleika subtly tells the tale of a young woman’s emancipation.
by Eliza Petkova
with Anna Manolova, Mihail Stoyanov, Maria Klecheva, Stoyko Ivanov
Germany 2016 92’

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