Balkan Documentary Films Take the Spotlight at CREES in March


By Rachel Brichta
Feb 23, 2012 Bookmark and Share

Two films from former Yugoslavia explore history and post-war relations

ANN ARBOR, MICH., February 23, 2012–The Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies (CREES) at the University of Michigan will screen two documentary films from the former Yugoslavia, in cooperation with courses taught by Tatjana Aleksic, assistant professor of Slavic languages and literatures and comparative literature.

The film "Cinema Komunisto" (101 min., 2011; Serbian with subtitles) will be shown in the Helmut Stern Auditorium at UMMA on March 13 at 7:00 PM. The documentary looks at Josip Broz Tito, who ruled Yugoslavia from 1945-1980, and explores the history of the country through the leader’s love of film. Tito used film to create a narrative of Yugoslavia, and interviews with his personal projectionist, favorite director, and others from the state-sponsored film industry reflect on the differences between on- and off-screen realities. "Cinema Komunisto" received the 2011 FOCAL International Award for Best Use of Archival Footage in an Arts Production and 2011 Gold Hugo Award for Best Documentary at the Chicago International Film Festival. This free public screening will be followed by a question and answer session with the director, Mila Turajlic. The following day, Ms. Turajlic will give a CREES Noon Lecture titled "'Cinema Komunisto': Reconstructing Yugoslav Identity on Film." Turajlic will also meet with students in Professor Aleksic’s courses while on campus and will talk with them in detail about her experience making the documentary.

The second film in this mini-series, "The Long Road through Balkan History" (58 min., 2010; Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian with subtitles), will be shown in 1636 International Institute on March 27 at 7:00 PM. This film chronicles the journey of two writers, Miljenko Jergovic from Croatia and Marko Vidojkovic from Serbia, as they travel in a Yugo through the lands of the former Yugoslavia on the road once known as the “Highway of Brotherhood and Unity.”

All events in the series are free and open to the public.

DATES: March 13, 14, 27

PLACE:          3/13, 7:00 PM – Helmut Stern Auditorium, U-M Museum of Art, 525 S. State
                       3/14, 12:00 PM – 1636 International Institute, 1080 S. University
                       3/27, 7:00 PM – 1636 International Institute, 1080 S. University

SPONSOR: Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies

WEB LINKS:   www.ii.umich.edu/crees/events
                         www.cinemakomunisto.com
                         www.seetv-exchanges.com/code/navigate.php?Id=435
 
The University of Michigan Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies is dedicated to advancing and disseminating interdisciplinary knowledge about the peoples, nations, and cultures of Russia, Central and Eastern Europe, and Eurasia, past and present. Through its own academic programs and its support of area-focused training and scholarship across U-M’s schools and colleges, CREES helps meet the nation’s ongoing need for experts with deep contextual knowledge who are proficient in the region’s languages. Through its outreach programs, CREES serves as a local, state, Midwest, and national resource on the region, providing instructional and informational services to the public, K-12 and postsecondary educators, media, government, business, and other constituencies. For more information, visit www.ii.umich.edu/crees.
 
The Ronald and Eileen Weiser Center for Europe and Eurasia (WCEE) supports faculty and student research, teaching, collaboration, and public engagement in studying the institutions, cultures, and histories of these regions. WCEE is housed in the University of Michigan International Institute with the Center for European Studies (CES); the Center for Russian, East European, & Eurasian Studies (CREES); and the Weiser Center for Emerging Democracies (WCED). Named in honor of Ronald and Eileen Weiser and inspired by their time in Slovakia during Ambassador Weiser’s service as U.S. ambassador from 2001-04, WCEE began operations in September 2008. For more information, visit www.ii.umich.edu/wcee.

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