On a mountaintop in southwest Serbia lies the womanless hamlet of Zabrdje, where the Jankovic brothers hold the fort. Veering between the utterly hilarious and deeply poignant, this ...
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A band of students comes to celebrate the New Year in an old manor house isolated from everything. But soon after their arrival, strange events disrupt the atmosphere, before the party turns squarely to the nightmare.
Tony T. Datis
On a mountaintop in southwest Serbia lies the womanless hamlet of Zabrdje, where the Jankovic brothers hold the fort. Veering between the utterly hilarious and deeply poignant, this beautifully-crafted film follows one brother's quest to introduce women back into the once-vibrant community. But with no roads or running water, convincing a Serbian woman is out of the question...Written by
This is a really wonderful and genuinely challenging film that left me feeling perplexed about its very nature - on the surface it can seem almost farcical, but its humour masks the very real desperation at its heart. It touches on a wide variety of themes including loneliness; sexual identity and misunderstanding; the continuing tension in the Balkans... Between men and women, just as between Serbians and Albanians, there seems to exist a great deal of goodwill - but a good portion of this is lost in translation.
There are very morose and sombre moments, but the film's ultimate message is quietly life-affirming. This is in part down to the absolutely spellbinding camera-work, capturing the quirks of day-to-day life in the beautiful Serbian mountains. And I loved the insistent presence of the animals, skilfully edited in, so that the animals seemed to be mocking the humans in their laborious efforts - that rooster with its seemingly all-seeing eye, the invading sheep on the rooftops, and the cats that nestle in their fleeces for warmth. The animals and the men alike - all are simply looking for a bit of comfort, snatched from the jaws of conflict and confusion...
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