The inhabitants of a small village in a backward area of Macedonia earn their living by sending their men abroad in search of employment. Three young girls, named Elica, Maria and Nikolina live and work as schoolteachers in the village. Each of them try to make sense of their lives, in that situation where it is imposed on them. In the village the greatest problem is the supply of water. Spring water is carried by Marko from the distant mountains Marko is falls in love with the poor girl Kate. The monotonous peasant life is dispelled with the arrival of a group of mining engineers who come to do some research. The one engineer, named Victor is among them and he attracts the schoolteacher Maria’s attention. The return of Trendafil the old man working abroad, Kate’s uncle, is a special event in the village’s life. The destiny of a great number of the inhabitants depends on the wealth of the uncle returned from America. However there is no place for faith and hope as the uncle returns with no earnings at all.
Dušan Makavejev’s debut feature, establishing his freewheeling, exploratory, and often childlike style.
From the Chicago Reader:
[One of the best Chicago releases of 1974.] “His first, seen here last, like all his others only better. A parable on Socialist living, enacted on the playground of peasants in the industrial landscape.” –Myron Meisel
From Time Out London:
Makavejev’s first feature is a delightful, typically eccentric concoction, centred very loosely indeed around a story about an engineer who visits a new town to assemble mining machinery. There his devotion to work fouls up his relationship with his beloved, while a fellow worker encounters problems when his wife discovers he has a mistress. A freewheeling kaleidoscope mixing comedy and social comment as it deals with both labour and sexual politics, not to mention many seemingly unrelated topics such as hypnotism and culture (there’s a marvellous climactic scene with Beethoven performed in an enormous foundry while the heroine conjures her own ode to joy), it defies description but is extremely entertaining. – Geoff Andrew
A story about young orphan girl who was rejected by her mother. Continue reading
A photographer tired of the jaded milieu of an early advertising age under socialism romances a young ballerina. The Triple Bridge, fountains and rooftops of the Slovenian capital, Ljubljana, and the ski resorts of the Slovenian Alps are the dreamy 1960s backdrops for this great love story. Disarmingly believable as the inexperienced naif, Snežana Nikšić, as the ballerina, steals the show.
Jean-Marie Straub: But all the same there is something very different. For example, there’s a Yugoslav filmmaker I like very much, whose called Matjaž Klopčič. He makes films which are … I don’t know, somewhere between Cocteau and Mallarme. Well, he did one, at first, which was called A Story that Doesn’t Exist, and then a second, called On Paper Wings (1967). The first was a total failure, but all the same he was able to do the second straight away, and I think he’s just finished shooting a third. You can’t say his films are suitable for a mass audience – you can’t say they’d be successful. Although the first film was unsuccessful he was able to do his second without making any concessions to the myth of the mass public which doesn’t exist. This sort of thing can’t happen in Western Europe.
Source: There’s Nothing More International Than a Pack of Pimps – A Conversation between Pierre Clémenti, Miklos Janscó, Glauber Rocha and Jean-Marie Straub convened by Simon Hartog in Rome, February 1970. Continue reading
A partisan comes secretly to town to find about what happened to his little son who barely remembers him. He is horrified when he finds out that his son is raised in a colaborators’ orphanage, brought up to hate and fight communists and partisans. He decides to take his son to the freed territory out of town…
A short love affair of young married woman and police inspector in winter resort will turn into fatal love after chance meeting. Inspired by Chekhov’s story “The Lady with the Dog”. Continue reading
An experimental film with no plot. Consists mostly of static shots portraying train wagons. The word COMPOSITION in Serbian has a triple meaning here – a train composition, composition of a shot, and music composition. Regarding the third meaning, the “soundtrack” of the film is a 5 second loop that keeps repeating itself over and over again. Continue reading