“. . . [O]nce I had a voice . . .”
Winner of prizes as best film and for its director, Ademir Kenović, Savrseni krug, from Bosnia-Herzegovina, is a striking portrait of the Siege of Sarajevo. Seeing it, one wants to kill any Bosnian Serb whose path one crosses. A dog and a wee kitten are among the victims here!
Abandoned by wife and grown daughter, Hamza is left behind in Sarajevo, a city under seige by snipers whose artillery attacks viciously erupt constantly, killing innocent people. Hamza is a poet. (Because Radovan Karadžić, the arch enemy, also is a poet?) Two young boys, brothers orphaned by the war, have made their way into Hamza’s flat. To no avail Hamza tries to find their aunt. Meanwhile, he has visions of himself at the end of a rope, and of his wife and daughter. One of the weaknesses of the film is that Hamza’s “visions” are never conclusively attributed to poetry or dementia.
Little Adis, the younger brother, casually makes a comment that pierces: “In the village a bullet blew my friend’s head off.” He and his deaf-mute brother, Kerim, are protective of one another, and Hamza, by degrees accepting and embracing his new young family, becomes protective of them both.
Shelling is constant. People die. An older man who has been silently observant throughout blows his brains out unexpectedly. Hamza arranges for the safe transport of his adopted sons to Germany. This doesn’t pan out, and one of the boys is killed. This is terribly painful, and I cried inconsolably. You will, too.
The script is by Kenović and Abdulah Sidran, (like Hamza and Karadžić) a poet—and a good one: “Long years without the bread of love.,/ without the water of love,/ without the air of love,/ without love.”
B(U)Y THE BOOK
MY BOOK, A Short Chronology of World Cinema, IS CURRENTLY AVAILABLE FROM THE SANDS FILMS CINEMA CLUB IN LONDON. USING EITHER OF THE LINKS BELOW, ACCESS THE ADVERTISEMENT FOR THIS BOOK, FROM WHICH YOU CAN ORDER ONE OR MORE COPIES OF IT. THANKS.