Zivojin Pavlovic – Kad budem mrtav i beo AKA When I Am Dead and Gone (1967)

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Plot:
Janko Bugarski “Džimi Barka” is a small time wallet snatcher, and an aspiring singer, who wants to make it big with as little effort as he can, traveling through industrial areas and looking for affairs with local women and easy money. On one of his travels he meets a young girl he takes to Belgrade to accompany him on an amateur singing contest, where he fails miserably, since he can’t follow a tune, and abandoning her, teams up with his former girlfriend, also a pickpocket, which takes him to his final journey. Continue reading

Slobodan Sijan – Maratonci trce pocasni krug AKA The Marathon Family (1982)

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Quote:
Sometimes handling the dead can be almost as difficult as handling the living, according to the Topalovic family and its many members — from great-grandparents on down. They are losing ground in the fight to keep their cemetery business from going under and have had to make a clandestine alliance with n’er-do-well entrepreneurs that will supply them with recycled coffins at a cheap price — an alliance that has kept the family in heavy debt to the grave-digging crooks. Meanwhile, young Mirko Topalovic has fallen in love with the daughter of one of the increasingly wealthy partners in the used coffin business. She works for a movie theater as a pianist (it is the era when silents are on the way out) and the owner of the theater has not yet fired her and switched to talkies because he wants her for himself. He suggests that they make a movie together — an erotic movie he thinks to himself — but seduction is his only goal. When Mirko starts to help out in this movie project, he comes to realize what is actually going on and overpowered by rage, he kills the woman and the theater owner. Puffed up with his aggressive deed, he goes home to convince the Topalovic family that they have to take up arms against the usurious grave-diggers — and a wild and bloody melée ensues that will determine the fate of the family. Jelisaveta Sablic won the “Best Actress” award at the 1982 Pula Film Festival for her role as the sought-after female lead in this film. ~ Eleanor Mannikka, All Movie Guide Continue reading

Goran Paskaljevic – Pas koji je voleo vozove AKA The Dog Who Loved Trains (1977)

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Quote:
A fugitive girl, a stuntman and a young man who lost his dog quite some time before, are joining together on a trip to reach each of their own destination. A youngster gets emotionally connected to the girl, and he’d try to help her to leave the bossy stuntman, to get false passport and escape to Paris. Continue reading

Srdjan Karanovic – Virdzina AKA Virgina (1991)

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Synopsis:
The story takes place in Yugoslavia at the end of the 19th century, in an isolated village near the Adriatic sea. Because of the extreme patriarchal culture there is a superstition that families without male heirs are cursed. When the wife of a farmer gives birth to their fourth daughter, father decides that the child will be brought up to become a so-called “Virgina” and that she will live as a man, so that she can work and be the family heir. This heartbreaking story of Virginas life is told with strong words, augmented with harsh inviroment. Continue reading

Srdjan Karanovic – Virdzina aka Virgina (1991)

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The story takes place in Yugoslavia at the end of the 19th century, in an isolated village near the Adriatic sea. Because of the extreme patriarchal culture there is a superstition that families without male heirs are cursed. When the wife of a farmer gives birth to their fourth daughter, father decides that the child will be brought up to become a so-called “Virgina” and that she will live as a man, so that she can work and be the family heir. This heartbreaking story of Virginas life is told with strong words, augmented with harsh inviroment. Continue reading

Goran Markovic – Sabirni centar AKA The Meeting Point (1989)

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Quote:
From the Screenwriter of “Who’s Singin’ Over There”,”The Marathon Family”,”Balkanski Spijun” (flicks that are Serbian Cinematography at its best) comes (Writing Credits) this brilliant movie set in the surreal atmosphere of an archaeological site in northern Serbia in the second half of the 20th century. During the excavations of ancient Roman ruins, an old archeology professor discovers a Roman tombstone for which he has been searching all of his life. The tomb actually covers the passage from this world to the “other” one. In an attempt to move it from its place, the professor suffers a heart attack and soon dies. However, he only appears to be dead; in fact he is in a state “between life and death.” Being half-dead, half-alive, he can now establish a connection between the living and the dead. Speaking with his loved ones who passed away he can suddenly see his life in a different perspective. With the help of the professor, even the dead, led by the desire to see their relatives and loved ones, pass through the same corridor only to find out that the world of the living is not quite as they remembered or imagined it. Continue reading

Zivko Nikolic – Bestije AKA Beasts (1977)

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Synopsis:
A Pasolini-esque mythical tale that is probably a metaphor for Serbian-Croatian Yugoslavia of old and its politics. On an island that floats, the leader is an old captain constantly awaiting death who always holds up a picture of himself as a young man, there are dozens of black-clothed crones always hovering in the background, there’s a priest, a sailor, an older woman with desperate lusts, a young man, and various other characters that all seem to represent something. There’s also a law that says that people are not responsible for their actions during a depressing storm. When a beautiful and mysterious woman arrives by boat, she creates havoc, with all the men lusting after her, the women chasing and hating her, as she stirs up dark secrets like greed and lust in the priest’s home, a pregnancy, and deep confused desires from the dying captain. She only seems to get along with the laid-back young man who plays with her. The natives sing traditional song, the atmosphere is earthy and mythical, all leading to a violent metaphorical climax. Continue reading