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by Milena Aboyan


Elaha, a 22-year-old German-Kurdish woman, is about to get married. She is engaged to Nasim, the brother of her employer at a dry cleaner’s, and their wedding is due to take place in a few weeks’ time. When Elaha slips away to smoke with her friends at a party, the talk turns to the topic of how many young women in her community are expected to enter marriage as virgins. Some future in-laws even demand medical proof from a doctor. Elaha has already had sex and so this poses a problem: to have her hymen surgically reconstructed requires money which she does not have. Small capsules of fake blood can supposedly help to feign an intact maidenhead – but will it work? Elaha begins to question the rules: why does she have to be a virgin anyway, and for whom?

international title: Elaha
original title: Elaha
country: Germany
sales agent: Pluto Film
year: 2023
genre: fiction
directed by: Milena Aboyan
film run: 110’
release date: DE 23/11/2023, FR 07/02/2024
screenplay: Milena Aboyan, Constantin Hatz
cast: Bayan Layla, Armin Wahedi, Derya Dilber, Derya Durmaz, Cansu Leyan, Beritan Balci
cinematography by: Christopher Behrmann
film editing: Elias Ben Engelhardt
music: Kilian Oser
producer: Matthias Greving
co-producer: Igor Dovgal
production: Kinescope Film, Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg, Essence Film, SWR – Südwestrundfunk, ARTE GEIE
distributor: Camino Filmverleih, Wayna Pitch

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