Saturday, January 13, 2007

Kukumi Movie - Part 2

Kukumi ("The Kukum") - Part 2
Kosova movie directed by Isa Qosja
Censored version

Cast:
Luan Jaha (Kukum), Anisa Ismaili (Mara), Donat Qosja (Hasan), Yllka Gashi, Shkumbin Istrefi etc.

Regione del Veneto Award - Venice Film Festival (2005)
Special Jury Award - Sarajevo Film Festival (2005)
Special Jury Award - Sofia Film Festival (2006)



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3 Comments:

Anonymous Kamera said...

For me the highlight of the competition was Kukumi (2005), a rare film production from Kosovo. Directed by Isa Qosja in 45 days on a budget of just €480,000 it is unlike any other film I have seen in a long time. The story takes place immediately after NATO troops enter Kosovo. Whilst they are seen as bringing freedom to Kosovo, this is a mixed blessing for the inmates of a mental asylum who are left to fend for themselves when their Serb guards leave. The film follows three of them (superbly played by Luan Jaha, Anisa Ismaili and Donat Qosja) as they go out into the world and try to integrate. They meet rejection but their attempts to help one another are beautifully shown by the director, supported by the wonderful camera work of Menduh Nushi. The film is slow-paced but never boring and feels like a sequence of near-spiritual experiences. Though we laugh at some of the antics of the protagonists they are given full dignity as human beings by the director and the actors and we are left to conclude that freedom really is a state of mind rather than something connected with any particular territory. The ridiculous notion of state borders is emphasized by the sight of a NATO tank driving through the feeble gate between Kosovo and Albania. In the end two of the main characters go back to their asylum and we are told that the world is 'a ball of shit covered in tar'. Both funny and sad it's a profoundly moving film.

I interviewed the director and he told me that the film has been partly inspired by his frequent visits to mental asylums where he had seen a couple who had fallen in love and had left the asylum only to want to come back again after two years on the streets. He had found that, in a similar way, people had felt lost after the war in Kosovo, unsure of what to do or where to go. Thankfully, Kosja managed to produce this film, his first for 17 years after the repression of Albanian artistic activity by the totalitarian Milosevic regime. It's an absolute masterpiece and a superb comment on the nature of humanity and freedom. Conversely perhaps, his next film will be about the bizarre true story of a dog killer in Pristina! . Without doubt it's a film to look forward to.

[kamera.co.uk]

20 January, 2007 18:28  
Anonymous Haifa IF said...

When NATO peacekeepers enter Kosovo, the Serbian guards at a desolate home for the mentally ill and retarded simply pack up and run. Finding the gate open, the ragged residents timidly step into a new world promising freedom. A tall, gaunt man in a raincoat known as the Kukum communicates only with his flute. His haunting melodies entrance Mara and the impulsive young Hasan, and the three friends set off through the country together.

The first film from Kosovo since it was declared a UN-protected "mission" is an enigmatic, mournful, darkly comic affair in which landscape is almost as important as character. "This metaphoric tale… is distinguished by a sharp, original vision," writes Deborah Young of Variety. "In this painful, senseless world, the mad trio appear as the only real human beings."

Isa Qosja: "The film is a metaphor of freedom and postwar people; those who suspiciously observed everything and the others who need only a bit of this freedom."

Isa Qosja was born in 1947 in Montenegro. He studied Acting at the School of Dramatic Arts in Pristina and Film and TV Direction at the Film Academy in Belgrade. He worked in Belgrade TV. His film "The Kukum" won the Special Jury Award at the 2005 Sarajevo Festival and the 2006 Sofia Festival and the Regione del Veneto Award at the 2005 Venice Film Festival.

[Haifa International Festival]

20 January, 2007 18:29  
Blogger blerim said...

Crap movie, and a crap director. What a waste of Kosovo taxpayers money. Nobody from the critics dared to say a thing in the media about this awful production.
A cheap mimic of Serb movies, as if the director doesn't have a satellite dish to update his communist movie-making ideas.

29 January, 2007 01:45  

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