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Bosnian-Herzegovinian Film Festival 2012

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from:Bosnian-Herzegovinian Film Festival category:Arts and Entertainment posted:April 30th, 2012

We will screen 16 short, feature and documentary films that reflect the diversity of the Bosnian-Herzegovinian experience. It is a rich and powerful body of work and you won't want to miss it!

The selection includes the world premieres of "Gold Diggers," "Framed," "Searching for the Devil" and "If I Don't"; U.S. premieres of "A Short Story,""85 Seconds," "Short for Vernesa B.," "The West in the East,""The Neverending Story," and New York premiere of "The Fuse: or How I Burned Simon Bolivar." We will also showcase feature films: "Jasmina," "Circus Columbia" and "In the Land of Blood and Honey," as well as documentaries "A Cell Phone Movie," "The Witness" and "I came to Testify."

These films explore various themes: return to nature; miners trapped underground; the filmmaking potential of cell-phone camera; typecasting of a Bosnian actress; mysterious prophecies; the magical frame; the hunt for the devil; fashion; adoption; children in the war; return from the exile; the siege of Sarajevo; violence against women and search for justice.

After select screenings, filmmaker Q&A will help provide more context. All films are either in English or have English subtitles.


Thursday, May 3 2012:

7 p.m. - Circus Columbia

Danis Tanović, 2010 | 113 minutes, Feature

Divko Buntic returns to his former home after a 20-year exile in Germany. Returning with an attractive young girlfriend, a flashy new Mercedes, a pocketful of cash, and a lucky black cat, things are looking good for Divko. When his cat goes missing things begin to fall apart: trouble with his girlfriend and the fledgling relationship with his estranged son are strained as the entire town scrambles to find the cat and collect the cash reward being offered. Divko's personal tumult mirrors the country's situation at large with signs appearing that the Bosnian War is coming. As the war looms, tensions run high and Divko must decide whether to stay in his newly reestablished home or retreat. "Circus Columbia" won the Audience Award at the 16th Sarajevo Film Festival.

Location: Block #1

Friday, May 4 2012:

7 p.m. - The Witness (Svjedok)

Haris Bilajbegović, 2012 | 42 minutes, Documentary

"The Witness" is a visually powerful reinterpretation and dramatization of Raif Begic's experiences during the war in Bosnia. It is a film about bravery of a survivor who is not afraid to tell his story as a key witness at the Hague Tribunal as well as at the Superior Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina against soldiers of the Army of Republika Srpska, later found guilty of war crimes. Screening at the 2012 BHFF will be the World Premiere for "The Witness."

Location: Block #2

7 p.m. - I Came to Testify

Pamela Hogan, 2011 | 52 minutes, Documentary

Narrated by Matt Damon, "I Came to Testify" is a moving story of how a group of 16 women who had been imprisoned and raped by Serb-led forces in the Bosnian town of Foca broke history's great silence and stepped forward to take the witness stand in an international court of law. Their remarkable courage resulted in a triumphant verdict that led to new international laws about sexual violence in war. This gripping documentary has won the 2012 Gracie Award for Outstanding Series.

Location: Block #2

9 p.m. - 85 Seconds (85 sekundi)

Ada Sokolović, 2011 | 2 minutes, Short Fiction

A short film based on author's actual experience during the Siege of Sarajevo in 1993. The film is a minimalist approach to storytelling about moments that can change one's life. "85 seconds" shows the power of one of those moments. Screening at the 2012 BHFF will be the U.S. Premiere for "85 Seconds."

Location: Block #3

9 p.m. - Neverending Story (Priča bez kraja)

Elvir Muminović, 2011 | 15 minutes, Short Fiction

After Emir and Kirsten lose their child in late pregnancy, they decide to adopt a child from Bosnia. At the moment when they arrive to take the child for a trial period, Emir finds out that the child is of the Bosnian Serb nationality. The film addresses the issue of the post war traumas and how the new generation of Bosnians are affected by it. Screening at the 2012 BHFF will be the U.S. Premiere for "Neverending Story."

Location: Block #3

9 p.m. - Jasmina

Nedžad Begović, 2010 | 89 minutes, Feature

An asthmatic grandmother (Safa) and her six-month-old granddaughter have arrived with a humanitarian convoy from the war-torn Sarajevo to a peaceful town on the Adriatic. Their neighbor, Stipe, is an alcoholic bum, and bent on making their life hell. During one of her asthma attacks, having no other choice, Safa knocks at Stipe's door and hands the baby over to him. After she passes away, Stipe clumsily begins to take care of the baby girl. Over time, the girl becomes his reason for living. He no longer tries to get rid of her.

Location: Block #3

Saturday, May 5 2012:

4 p.m. - Framed

Davor Mamuzić, 2011 | 2 minutes, Short Fiction

Arriving home after hard day at work, an exhausted man gets a rare glimpse of the future with the magical frame that appears at his doorstep. Screening at the 2012 BHFF will be the World Premiere of this intriguing short film.

Location: Block #4

4 p.m. - If I Don't

Zinka Bejtić, 2012 | 8 minutes, Short Fiction

"If I Don't" is a fashion film in narrative form. It reflects on the idea that clothes represent a choice by which we feel, either trapped or liberated. It explores the idea to leave the box we all feel that we are inside and search for and face our fears. It also leads to realization that our fears are imaginary. Screening at the 2012 BHFF will be the World Premiere for "If I Don't."

Location: Block #4

4 p.m. - The Fuse: or How I Burned Simon Bolivar (Kako sam zapalio Simona Bolivara)

Igor Drljača, 2011 | 9 minutes, Documentary

Using personal home video footage, this documentary portrays how a young boy's attempts to avoid a poor grade on a school assignment in 1990's Sarajevo may have contributed to the start of the war. This short documentary has been awarded Canada's Top Ten Short Films of 2011. It has also been screened at the Sarajevo Film Festival, Toronto and Vancouver International Film Festivals, and at the Cinema du Reel International Documentary Film Festival in Europe. It premiered in the U.S. at the SXSW festival.

Location: Block #4

4 p.m. - Short for Vernesa B.

Jons Vukorep, 2011 | 11 minutes, Short Fiction

Bosnian actress, Vernesa Berbo, leaves war-torn Bosnia and settles in Germany where, as an illegal immigrant, she tries to continue her acting career. The only roles she is able to get are roles depicting Eastern European women as, for example, a Polish cleaning lady, Romanian asylum seeker, Russian prostitute, or a Bosnian refugee, roles which take her back to her own personal nightmare. The film has screened at the 17th Sarajevo Film Festival as well as Courtmetrage, Brussels Short Film Festival. Screening at the 2012 BHFF will be the U.S. Premiere for "Short for Vernesa B."

Location: Block #4

4 p.m. - A Cell Phone Movie (Film mobitelom)

Nedžad Begović, 2011 | 62 minutes, Documentary

A doctor orders the filmmaker to walk regularly to get over an angina. In three years, he covers thousands of kilometers. Taking his mobile phone, he films and records the things going on around him. We hear him talking with his family and friends. We share in his view of modern-day Sarajevo: a polyphonic kaleidoscope, strange and entertaining…This intriguing documentary won the Best Documentary Award at the 17th Sarajevo Film Festival.

Location: Block #4

6 p.m. - Gold Diggers

Al Mehičević, 2012 | 9 minutes, Short Fiction

Three miners trapped underground have captivated audiences around the world. Their devout wives have now become celebrities. A young lady turns up to the site uninvited. The wives want her gone but she has a story to tell – she is having an affair with one of the miners and she wants her share of the fame. One by one, the mistresses turn up to the site as the whole world watches the cat fight unfold. The miners are trapped in more ways than one. Screening at the 2012 BHFF will be the World Premiere for "Gold Diggers."

Location: Block #5

6 p.m. - A Short Story (Kratka priča)

Ibro Hasanović, 2011 | 10 minutes, Short Fiction

An enigmatic character tells the story (a prophecy originating from Eastern Bosnia) that has been transmitted orally for over half a century. The story relates to a prophecy that was given to the people of a village in 1941 by a local imam, based on the mystical book "Kasida." The book has predicted the main tragedies that happened during the second part of the 20th century in former Yugoslavia and predicts more to come in the 21st. Screening at the 2012 BHFF will be the U.S. Premiere for "A Short Story."

Location: Block #5

6 p.m. - Searching for the Devil (U potrazi za šejtanom)

Samir Bajrić, 2011 | 31 minutes, Documentary

Shot as a part mocumentary and part documentary, "Searching for the Devil" uses humor and real interviews to address one of the biggest enigmas in human history. Mostly filmed in the area around the town of Kljuc, Bosnia and Herzegovina, , the project is a debut of the director, Samir Bajric. The plot explores the possibility of the true existence, presence and influence of the Devil on mankind. Screening at the 2012 BHFF will be the World Premiere for "Searching for the Devil."

Location: Block #5

6 p.m. - The West in the East (Zapad na istoku)

Nisvet Hrustić, 2010 | 24 minutes, Documentary

A lover of nature is trying to build a weekend house on his own and bring water to it from its source in the forest ¾ of a mile away. Combining Eastern resourcefulness and Western ideas, he uses lumber waste as building material, preserving the environment while facing incomprehension and derision by local community. This captivating documentary was screened at the 16th Sarajevo Film Festival. It has been awarded the Main Prize in the category "People and Earth/Ecological Success Stories" at the 37th International Festival of Sustainable Development Films in Bratislava, Slovakia.

Location: Block #5

7:45 p.m. - In the Land of Blood and Honey

Angelina Jolie, 2011 | 127 minutes, Feature

Set against the backdrop of the Bosnian War that tore the Balkan region apart in the 1990s, 'In the Land of Blood and Honey' tells the story of Danijel and Ajla, two people from different sides of a brutal ethnic conflict. Danijel, a soldier fighting for the Serbs, and Ajla, a Bosnian held captive in the camp he oversees, knew each other before the war, and could have found love with each other. But as the armed conflict takes hold of their lives, their relationship grows darker, their motives and connection to one another ambiguous, their allegiances uncertain. 'In the Land of Blood and Honey' portrays the incredible emotional, moral and physical toll that the war exerts both on individuals and people as a whole, and the terrible consequences that stem from the lack of political will to intervene in a society stricken with conflict.

This is a Bosnian language version of the film with English subtitles.

Location: Block #6

Date: May 3-5, 2012

Location: Tribecca Cinemas, 54 Varick Street, New York, NY 10013

Ticket: $14

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