Branko Schmidt – Put lubenica aka The Melon Route (2006)


One of the most terrible ills of our time, people trafficking, follows the so-called Balkans Route for smuggling people into the West. Bosnian and Croatian papers often carry stories about groups of illegal immigrants discovered by the police, and just as frequent are the news of such imimigrants’ deaths. The Melon Route is inspired by the true story of twelve illegal immigrants who drowned in the river Sava on the border of Bosnia and Croatia. This event has been enlarged in the script, and seen through the eyes of a young Chinese girl, who loses her father in the accident. She enters into a tenuous relationship with an ex-Croatian Army soldier, a cured drug addict suffering from PTSD, who lost everything in the war. The linguistic and cultural barriers between the two protagonists give an added dimension to the film, shot through by the painful realization that it is hard to carry an inescapable burden: one’s place of birth. Continue reading