For starters, I have to say that even though it was labeled as “a propaganda movie” I must say that the propaganda failed on the very first step as it was extremely difficult to even find the movie to see it in the first place. It’s like it’s being shown in just a couple of cinemas in the world – one could say that because of this poor marketing, the movie is a disgrace to proper propaganda movies.
Acting, cinematography, directing, and all the other “technical” aspects of the movie are really different than in a typical Hollywood movie, which in my case is bad, because I like a movie to be just that – a movie. This, on the other hand, was more like a reinactment, or a documentary. If that was Jolie’s wish, that’s fine, but for me it was on the verge of being boring. Maybe it was the fact that I saw the movie with actors speaking broken English instead of Serbian that also ruined it for me, but I really couldn’t connect with the main two characters and their relationship.
There are some really disturbing scenes in the movie. This was one of the things that upset the public opinion in Serbia most, because the public opinion doesn’t accept that anyone on Serbian side was that cruel. Unfortunately, I believe real war was even more cruel and disturbing than any movie can describe.
All that aside, the thing that puzzles me the most, and I know I am not the only one is – how is this movie supposed to contribute to reconciliation? Which is, according to Jolie’s statements, her goal with this. Problem is, it is just not that good to get the point across.
Don’t get me wrong here – I don’t consider this movie to be anti-Serbian. I don’t really believe that there is such a thing as an anti-Serbian movie. Yes, the movie has only the Serbian military as bad guys. But, and this seems to be hard to grasp for great majority of Serbs: this fact doesn’t make the movie anti-Serbian. This is because – are you ready for this – one Serbian military squadron does not represent even the entire Serbian army, let alone the entire Serb population. But it’s the trap majority of Serb population tends to fall into: we defend ourselves even if no one is really attacking us, and by doing so we end up defending the real bad guys – the war criminals.
I know this isn’t much of a review, but you can thank the Serbian media for that – the movie was so spoiled for me by the people who have seen it and reviewed in in the media in such detail that I basicaly knew what was going to happen scene by scene. My opinion on the movie and the whole hoopla surrounding it was already formed long ago, so basically my review would have been the same even if I hadn’t seen the movie, which is absurd to say the least.
Now, since Angelina didn’t make this movie to make a profit out of it, I guess it’s safe to say that you can find the movie on youtube if you want to see it, under it’s Serbian title “U zemlji krvi i meda”, and if that fails, you can always download it via torrent. I’d be interested to hear you opinion about the movie in the comments.