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Till recently an University professor, a bohemian writer, a member of Belgrade's intellectual circles and a passionate opponent of the Milosevic's regime, TEJA is today a manager of a big publishing house. One day a strange visitor comes uninvited to his office, carrying a big suitcase. That man is LUKA, a former agent of the Serbian Security Service, now a taxi driver. Suddenly a surprising confrontation of these two men begins, which is full of incredible twists. As we get to know LUKA, we find that his mission for the last ten years was to daily shadow TEJA, to write reports on his behavior and acts, to watch on him even in the most intimate moments of his life. Gradually the last ten years of their lives begin to appear, the lives of these two men with quite different destinies. We see before us the chronicle of an age from the most incredible situations, often touching, sometimes irresistibly funny, to the most tragic events and the darkest war stories in the history of one ... Written by
Dusan Kovacevic is author of the best screenplays in Serbian cinematography. He wrote one of the most hilarious movies ever- The Marathon Family (Maratonci trce pocasni krug, 1982) and much more. When he decided to write and direct "The Professional", placed in Serbia after the 1999's October revolution, i was a bit skeptic, thinking of this movie as of another war/love stories from Serbia's underground, violent and hard to watch (that's the best description of 80% newer Serbian movies). God, i was wrong.
Teja is the president of one of the state's companies- a newspaper. He is typical represent of the new democratic Serbia's government: lucid, educated, intelligent. He is going through a hard period in life, and the situation in his company is going worse and worse. The first 15 minutes are another successful Kovacevic's attempt to make fun of audience. Setting the start of the movie in Teja's office, focusing on daily politics, makes you think that all this movie is going to be another of the domestic trash movies you could see in past years (with a few honorable exceptions). When a strange old man in coat steps into the office, everything turns upside-down. Not taking off his coat or hat, just putting two large suitcases on the floor, Luka starts talking to Teja who soon realises that in front of him stands extremely educated man who claims to be a policeman.
One thing about Luka starts to be strange to Teja- the man he sees the first time in his life seems to know too much about him. When he asks Luka about the content of the books, old man tells him that every page of the books is about Teja. Other suitcase is full of his lost things. Luka has been following Teja for decades, writing down his every single move. Luka seems to know more about Teja's life than Teja himself. They together remember the most interesting details of their lives collecting the pieces of this movie's puzzle.
Thinking of a movie most similar to The Professional, i stopped at Burton's "Big Fish". Both movies are based on collection of flashback stories. Flashbacks in Kovacevic's movie are less fictional, but not less interesting, making you laugh at start, and cry at the end of the movie. It is impressive how a good scenario can make a low-budget movie so interesting. Professional will surely wake up emotional side of you and make you think of it a long after it is finished. A special credit goes to a beautiful soundtrack by Momcilo Bajagic. This is one of the foreign movies that should easily have blockbuster Hollywood remakes.
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