13 Tzameti

13 Tzameti

3.5 2
Director: Géla Babluani

Cast: Georges Babluani, Aurélien Recoing, Pascal Bongard

An aimless 20-year-old with a penchant for following the rules receives a mysterious set of instructions that lead him down a path from which he may never return in director Géla Babluani's tense tale of death and chance. Sébastien has come into possession of a train ticket and a mysterious set of instructions. Though he is unsure of


An aimless 20-year-old with a penchant for following the rules receives a mysterious set of instructions that lead him down a path from which he may never return in director Géla Babluani's tense tale of death and chance. Sébastien has come into possession of a train ticket and a mysterious set of instructions. Though he is unsure of exactly what fate awaits him when he arrives at his destination, one thing is certain: these items were most certainly not meant for him. Bored by his uneventful existence and hungering for something new, Sébastien boards the outbound train and takes his first bold steps into an unknown future. But the world can be a cruel and unforgiving place filled with unfeeling men to whom human life means little more than a lost wager, and if Sébastien is to make it through his harrowing journey alive he must keep his wits about him and pray that luck is on his side.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide
13 Tzameti has a chilling, electrifying central showpiece, but it lacks the plot mechanics to deliver an equivalent sense of dramatic tension. There's plenty of the regular kind of tension -- sometimes more than a viewer can handle -- but it's restricted to certain contained moments of wincing intensity. And because it's driven more by the situation than the characters, it's visceral and surface-level, rather than emotionally resonant. Writer-director Géla Babluani has made an impeccable homage to the French New Wave with his black-and-white thriller about a 13-person game of Russian roulette, gambled on by the rich, in which participants become involved somewhat unwittingly. The Georgian filmmaker uses his outsider perspective to bring a unique touch to the French-language film, making for a memorable experience that recalls classic New Wave films. 13 Tzameti is so rich with style and atmosphere, however, that the story ends up not quite living up to its potential. The viewer's surrogate (played by the director's younger brother) is a guy we don't know much about -- he's an opportunistic contractor who's about to be stiffed for services rendered, so he steals his employer's invitation to a game he knows nothing about. He doesn't have a goal other than to be compensated, and to get out alive. Babluani masterfully controls each moment of truth -- cutting away to the participants' faces, destroyed by anxiety, and to a bulb that illuminates when it's time to pull the trigger -- but by following one character at the expense of all others, he inevitably removes some uncertainty about each outcome. Fans probably won't care too deeply about any narrative shortcomings, since the French New Wave was not particularly a plot-driven movement, anyway. 13 Tzameti has the stylistic trademarks and the bleak world view to make it a shining modern example of that form.

Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Palm Pictures / Umvd
Region Code:
[B&W, Wide Screen]
Sales rank:

Special Features

Interview with director Gela Babluani and Actors Georges Babluani and Aurélien Recoin; The DVD design contest - top 13 finalists; Sunday's Game - a short film about some nice old ladies; Deleted scenes; Testimony of a survivor; 5.1 surround sound; US theatrical trailer; Palm previews; Weblinks

Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Georges Babluani Sebastien
Aurélien Recoing Jacky, Player No. 6
Pascal Bongard Master of Ceremonies
Philippe Passon Jean-Francois Godon
Pascal Bougard Master Of Ceremonies
Fred Ulysse Alain
Nicolas Pignon Godfather
Vania Vilers Actor,Mr. Shloendorff
Christophe Vandevelde Ludo, Player No. 6's Brother
Augustin Legrand José
Jo Prestia Biéreau, Pierre
Jean-François Godon Philippe Passon
Djalalli Amouche Actor
Melchior Aquino Actor
Nouredine Ameur Actor
Makharadze Avtandil Actor
Hervé Babadi Actor
Liana Babluani Actor
Likouna Babluani Actor
Temur Babluani Actor
Laurent Bariteau Actor
Robert Beaupre Actor
Philippe Beautier Actor
Allan Benkaci Actor
Claude Billois Actor
Gilles Bongibault Actor
Karim Bouguerra Actor
Jean Borodine Actor
Bernard Bouillon Actor
Cédric Bouvier Actor
Urbain Cancelier Actor
Matéo Capelli Actor
Alexandre Cardinalli Actor
M. Chapion Actor
Didier Champion Actor
Didier Constant Actor
Jean-Pierre Cormarie Actor
Simon Cohen Actor
Jean-Pierre Cottin Actor
Christelle Coulée Actor
Stéphane De Fraia Actor
Benoît De La Porte Actor
Bruno Daveze Actor
Gérard Desestre Actor
Jean-Michel Delaloche Actor
Cédric Deprez Actor
Benoît Deseze Actor
Abed Djerrar Actor
Louis Donval Actor
Jean-Paul Dostone Actor
Emmanuel Du Couldray Actor
Irène Joseph Edouard Actor
Fred Epaux Actor
Daniel Faure Actor
Serge Feuillard Actor
Cyprien Fiasse Actor
Laurent Ficher Actor
Eric Fouchet Actor
Marc-Antoine Frédéric Actor
Christian Gaïtch Actor
Olivier Galliano Actor
Jacques Gallo Actor
Patrice Garelli Actor
Roland Gervet Actor
Alain Girardot Actor
Philippe Gluck Actor
André Huet Actor
Mohamed Houssain Ali Actor
Franck Houis Actor
Mohammed Ikrou Actor
Daniel Isoppo Actor
Pascal Ivancic Actor
Franck Jean Elie Actor
Claude Johann Actor
Pierre Johann Actor
Amaud Kakpeyen Actor
Samba Kante Actor
Philippe Kieffer Actor
Jacques Lafolye Actor
Nadir Lalouni Actor
Daniel Lefort Actor
François Legrand Actor
Jean-Baptiste Legrand Actor
Jean-Paul Lopez Actor
Christelle Louessard Actor
Joseph Malerba Actor
Gaston Marcantoni Actor
M. Marel Actor
Jacqueline Martin Actor
Bruno Mary Actor
Mohammed Mazari Actor
Patrick Michaëlis Actor
Christian Nedjel Actor
Didier Nobletz Actor
Pascal Oumaklouf Actor
Raphael Palma Actor
Jérôme Paquette Actor
Franck Pejoux Actor
Jacques Petit Actor
Patrick Pierron Actor
Jérôme Wiggins Actor

Technical Credits
Géla Babluani Director,Producer,Screenwriter
Delphine Birarelli Makeup
Séverine Le Chapelin Makeup
Bruno Daniault Associate Producer
Julien Darras Asst. Director
Jean-Marie Delbary Associate Producer
Georges Demetreau Special Effects Supervisor
East (Troublemakers) Musical Arrangement
Aurore Goureau Makeup
Nathanael Karmitz Associate Producer
Jean-Baptiste Legrand Associate Producer,Production Manager
Didier Lozahic Sound Editor,Sound Mixer
Tariel Meliava Cinematographer
Alexandre Meliava Associate Producer
Morteza Mohammadi Associate Producer
Valentine Perrin Morali Makeup
Noemie Moreau Editor
Olivier Oursel Associate Producer
Anna Paradisi Makeup
Bernard Peault Art Director
Elodie Rischmann Makeup
Fanny Saadi Production Manager
Sabine Solin Costumes/Costume Designer

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- 13 Tzameti
1. Laborer [7:13]
2. An Overhead Conversation [5:25]
3. An Untimely Death [4:20]
4. A Deal for the Letter [6:22]
5. To Paris [3:35]
6. The Journey Continues [4:50]
7. Searched [2:59]
8. The Player [4:57]
9. Round 1 [5:40]
10. Placing Bets [3:16]
11. Round 2 [2:20]
12. Brothers [3:15]
13. Round 3 [5:30]
14. Choosing the Duelists [3:29]
15. Round 4 [9:19]
16. Escape [5:43]
17. Questioned [7:15]
18. Going Home [7:30]


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13 Tzameti 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Tzameti is a un-unique film that screams debut feature, and yet it is still a great deal entertaining. The premise, where an innocent is submerged into mystery, darkness, and danger, and is changed in the end, is hardly a unique setup and in most cases would be a mere skeleton to hang superb performances upon as the real meat of the film. 13 doesn't do that, as the acting is well above exaggerated, and the film stumbles a bit for it. Still, the premise is catching enough to keep you watching to see where it inevitably leads. Unfortunately, the final climax of the film seems very very forced, or intentionally inserted for the sake of tragedy, and totally unnecessary. This actually would have worked overall more as a novel than as a screenplay for a film, but it isn't bad, it just simply isn't great either.
Guest More than 1 year ago
“13 Tzameti” follows Sebastien -played capably by George Babluani- as he struggles to find work in a small town. He gets a job roofing the house of a drug addict who has the misfortune of overdosing before Sebastien can finish, and subsequently paid. Luckily for Sebastien, before the drug addict dies he overhears him talking about a big money making job opportunity on the horizon. Sebastien comes into possession of the train ticket needed to get to the job, and decides to go down the rabbit hole. Unfortunately for Sebastien, he doesn’t find a Wonderland, in fact quite the opposite. Before he knows what’s going on he’s in way over his head in a sinister world that he could never have known existed. A French language film shot entirely in black and white, “13 Tzameti” is a skillfully captured film that is devoted to telling its twisted story. Director Gela Babluani "brother to star George" and cinematographer Tariel Meliava do not try to do too much with the camera, and succeed at developing extreme tension on screen without having gallons of blood or using other oft used thriller/horror movie surprises. It is pragmatic storytelling all the way here, and it is very effective. In fact, the audience feels that it is part of the story as details are revealed to us at the same time as Sebastien. As a result, “13 Tzameti” frequently has the look and feel of a documentary because of this technique. The acting in “13 Tzameti” is extremely consistent, and sometimes very good indeed. George Babluani does a fine job as Sebastien while Philippe Passon delivers a very good "if abbreviated" performance as the drug addict whose death perpetuates the entire story. Pascal Bongard and Aurelien Recoing also give entertaining performances during the meat of the film. 13 Tzameti is a simple, but highly effective thriller that is a fine debut from director Gela Babluani. I look forward to watching more films from this clearly talented director.