FrightFest 2010: A Serbian Film reaction

We talk to director Srdjan Spasojevic about the BBFC and more...

There are a lot of accusations being levelled at A Serbian Film.

Some dismiss it as torture porn. Some decry it as cynical shock cinema; entertainment directed at society’s darkest denizens.

Others reject the allegorical assertions made by director Srdjan Spasojevic, denying his claims that the film operates as a metaphor for Serbian society.

Our reaction to watching it (prior to FrightFest’s unavoidable last-minute pull following the BBFC’s decision to order significant cuts) was, after a period of stunned numbed silence, to applaud it as a piece of pure cinema.

It’s beyond disturbing, with several key sequences almost impossible to watch.

But at no point to you lose your faith in the filmmakers, your trust in them as artists. This isn’t a cheap mondo nasty, made by giggling idiots. This is a stylishly shot, brilliantly written film, packed full of Oscar-worthy performances.

But be warned, it won’t ever leave you. There are images in this film that will forever be tattooed on your mind’s eye; no matter how much you wish you could remove them.

In another universe, a large crowd of horror fans are about to make their way into the Empire’s biggest screen, to endure the most disturbing film most of them will ever see.

In the absence of that, we sat down with director Spasojevic this morning, to provide a forum to answer his critics, to tell us about his influences, and to discuss his next project.

On the BBFC cuts...

 

On people downloading it illegally...


On the torture porn genre...

 

On shock cinema...

 

On his influences...

 

On the horror genre...

 

Is A Serbian Film allegorical or personal?

 

On his next project...


 

Comments

    • duxford

      Aug 29th 2010, 23:17

      The main problem with this film is that it requires an endless stream of people to explain what the analogy of it all is. Had the film been called something like 'Milos' Last Picture' or something equally as vague, and had we not heard from the director, you'd have no idea that it is supposed to be an analogy for what the filmmakers claim it is, and it would seem like a pointless, over the top piece of exploitation cinema. The fact that EVERY single article or review about this film feels the need to explain that analogy to people haven't yet seen it seems to indicate that this film fails on a very basic level - it does not pass on the intended message it is trying to deliver without the three word title. Has any film in history relied on it's title in this way? A 60 second short of a dog crapping on a lawn could have made the same point. The fact is that the filmmakers have headed straight for the most extreme and taboo subjects, which seems desperate in a climate of endless Saw movies.

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    • NBGD21

      Aug 30th 2010, 10:22

      Regarding the title, I think that it is a perfect one for the Serbian audience. They completely understand the movie and what is the catch. The director is trying to explain it to the foreign audience. As foreign audience hasn't been able to taste of this kind of life. Try to listen at what he is talking about.

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