Jolly Cinema > 21:30


Branko Bauer


Thursday 30/06/2022


Original version with subtitles


Film Notes

The ability to combine playfulness and sobriety, classicism and poetry, sensitive historical insight and the ability to observe the workings of life with a free heart are the rare gifts of master filmmaker Branko Bauer, one of the most important artists to emerge in the postwar period and a doyen of Yugoslav cinema. Ne okreći se, sine, his seminal work made in 1956, signalled a change in the representation of the Second World War on film. Looking at the nature of totalitarianism on the one hand and the effects of genocide and the Holocaust on the other, the film conveys the experience of war through a personal lens. In a contender for the most thrilling finale on celluloid it also allows us to reflect on the present significance of remembrance and what it means to ‘look back’. The film follows the journey of the partisan Neven (Bert Sotlar) who escapes from a train headed for the concentration camp Jasenovac. On arriving in Zagreb and finding his young son Zoran (Zlatko Lukman) indoctrinated by fascist ideology, the father – with the help of Vera (Lila Andres) – must find a way to get his son back and leave the city together before they are discovered by the regime’s police. A starkly composed, lyrical and heartrending portrait of father and son, the film opens up the question of personal responsibility and rightful action under a totalitarian regime that seeks to depersonalise its subjects and the way they relate to one another. Bauer, who would be a key influence for the New Yugoslav Film, was born into a Croatian family in Dubrovnik and trained at Jadran film. He had already made several great films about the life of children on the Adriatic Sea. He teamed up with Serbian poet Arsen Diklić, who would become a beloved children’s writer, to write the screenplay. When watching the beautiful archive print of this classic film one can appreciate that together Bauer and Diklić were able to retain that first spark and – while treading into ever deeper and more dangerous waters – preserve the most important thing of all: the simplicity of a child.

Mina Radović

Cast and Credits

Scen.: Branko Bauer, Arsen Diklić. F.: Branko Blažina. M.: Boris Tešija. Scgf.: Zelimir Zagotta. Mus.: Bojan Adamič. Int.: Bert Sotlar (Neven Novak), Lila Andres (Vera), Zlatko Lukman (Zoran Novak), Mladen Hanzlovsky (Ivica Dobrić), Radojko Ježić (Leo), Stjepan Jurčević (padre di Ivica), Greta Kraus-Aranicki (Matilda, madre di Ivica), Nikša Štefanini (capo del servizio di sorveglianza degli Ustascia). Prod.: Zvonimir Kovačić per Jadran Film. 35mm. D.: 105’. Bn.