Quo Vadis, Aida?

2020 [SERBIAN]

Drama / History / War

0
IMDb Rating 7.9 10 26552

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Synopsis


Uploaded By: FREEMAN
November 10, 2021 at 01:12 PM

Director

Cast

Raymond Thiry as Major Franken
Johan Heldenbergh as Colonel Karremans
720p.BLU
954.78 MB
1280*682
Serbian 2.0
NR
24 fps
1 hr 43 min
P/S counting...

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Horst_In_Translation 4 / 10

This movie really could have been going places, but it didn't

"Quo vadis, Aida?" (bad title already with the pseudo-important Latin and Aida being mentioned instead of Srebrenica) is a relatively new movie and I will not list all the countries of production here because it is simply too many. You know where to look that up. The most frequent language is Serbo-Croatian, but there are many others as well, so chances are close to 100% that you will need subtitles for the watch here. If you want to watch. You probably shouldn't, but I will get to that later. You can already see it from my rating. The writer and director is Jasmina Zbanic. She started making films, i.e. Short films, back in the final years of the new millennium, so she has been active in the industry for over 20 years now. This one here, however, is her big breakthrough you could say and it also resulted in her being given the chance to direct an upcoming episode of the new television series The Last of Us that is based on the really successful video game with the same name. Anyway, we are not talking games or series today, but movies. Zbanic is a filmmaker who usually comes up with her own scripts, so no surprise she did here and she also scored two BAFTA nominations thanks to this movie. The film runs for minimally over 100 minutes, so not a particularly short film, but also really not too long and I am glad about that. The latter I mean. This is book-based by the way and the one who inspired this film was Hasan Nuhanovic and maybe you have come across him somewhere in the documentary genre already. The woman you see in the center of the film is the one you also see on the poster here and her character Aida is also mentioned in the title of the film, probably in pretty much every international title too. The actress is Jasna Djuricic, who started acting around the same time her director and writer here started making movies, so also over two decades ago already. Zbanic is almost a decade younger though.

The rest of the cast I cannot say too much about. Most actors are Eastern European, but the international impact of the story also results in performers from other countries. The actors are not the problem though, at least not the supporting actors. There are many films out there with unknown actors that are still really good and sometimes also really successful despite a cast without big names. They are also doing a solid job for the most part and it's probably my loss that I don't know them. I don't know lead actress Djuricic either, but this is not my loss I am sure. I thought she was majorly disappointing and offered two or three different face expressions from beginning to end. Basically, it is really all about her being and looking shocked as you also see it on the poster here on imdb. I mean her character sure has enough reasons to be and appear shocked, but it somehow felt awkwardly wrong from beginning to end. She deserves major blame, but major blame should also go to Zbanic here for the writing. I think the scenes that did not feature the title character directly were sometimes okay, but when Aida was at the center of the story, which she was sadly way too often, it was a weak, sometimes even terrible watch. This refers mostly to those scenes where they present her to us as desirable, wonderful and amazing and in a way where every woman should want to be her. It reminded me of female characters on ARD Degeto films. Maybe German readers know what I am talking about here. This is also a German co-production by the way.

I will mention some scenes and examples where this film really hit rock bottom when it came to depicting Aida. I mean I agree that we are in need of more female-led movies with strong women characters, but this is absolutely not it. It all feels so gimmicky. Take a look at when we see her party with much younger woman and take part in a beauty (I think it was "Best Hair") competition and she looks so dressed-up all of a sudden with all this makeup too and yeah, it's of course very accurate realism and enough that she does not win... Everything else about that scene is of course also realistic, isn't it!? Then there is the scene when she is up there working as an interpreter and offers that she can do the job that the guy in charge wants from somebody else in the crowd. How she keeps talking to him, almost begging him and still implies she belongs with him and not with the people down there in terms of class and power and dignity. Then there is a doctor or something and he is of course pretty attractive and amazed by Aida when they talk to each other on a few occasions. Especially when he asks her what is next on her agenda. Romantic tension there and he clearly thinks she is an amazing woman. But she is of course married and faithful to her husband. She also brought up two boys that mean the world to her. Now men. And her response is that she wants to go back to teaching eventually because of course she is also an inspiring educator and dealing with kids and making an impression on them, preparing the next generation for the world comes easy for her. Then there is one scene in which we have three people walk together towards the camera and Aida is of course in the middle although the other two are much more important in terms of professions. Also all her negotiation moments felt so strange and just not authentic. In reality, she never would have done anything else really than used her linguistic talent, maybe (if at all) asked on one occasion to make a greater impact and that would have been it. The begging moment was also not good. The writing for once was not a key issue there, but the protagonist's overacting really was. Also a bit doubtful if she really knew what tragedy was coming her family's way as it it implied here.

And what happened was the Srebrenica massacre, a genocide that happened back in the 1990s and this is when this film is set. We do not see people dying really, but we see guns fired almost at the very end. I must say this also felt a bit like the easy way out and I think this massacre deserves a much better movie to be honest. To me it almost felt like an insult to those killed and their relatives when we, right before the closing credits, read on the screen for whom this film was made. Whom it is dedicated to. I cannot accept it. It was a shoddy female character study for the most part. Here and there, as I stated earlier, it was okay and even a bit on the watchable side, for example when the soldiers basically want to get in there and check for weapons etc. When Aida is just a small character for once. That was okay and really tense too. But these moments where clearly not the rule. Almost everything else was just not on a high level. I have not read the book that inspired this movie, so I cannot say if the problem is there already or if it lies exclusively with the execution here. The ending was also pretty messy. I already mentioned the guns being fired. Actually, this could have made for a solid ending if the closing credits rolled in right there. Not a good one, but a solid one. But of course instead the movie must give us another unrealistic scene with how Aida ends up in an apartment and randomly runs into a former tormentor (by the way the one who kept hating against Muslims earlier if I remember correctly, what a fitting inclusion for a 2020/2021 release). What a coincidence! And in the desperate attempt to still make it a somewhat happy ending, we see her watching a performance including young people that shows us how despite her loss she did not lose her humanity and her believe that good will prevail. And that she focused on helping young people.

Overall, I find it baffling how many people loved this film. Viewers, awards bodies and critics. It felt very shallow to me and not even close to bringing the emotional gravity that Srebrenica deserves. Let's be honest here. This film could have been entirely fictitious and still almost nothing would have changed. A true disappointment. You should watch a documentary instead. There is just too much wrong here. It's really a joke if you take a look at how all male characters are written. At best flirty, but really either cruel and ruthless or incompetent, but in any case not on par with how much of a strong woman Aida is. And how smart. I mean look at these inferior men telling Aida about younger and much more attractive women how they cannot deal with stupid women implying that Aida is of course leagues above those. Aida takes it the most humble way possible of course. She may be the best there ever was, but also she is of course as modest as it gets. Degeto alert once again. I suppose that you could say that how much you like (well "like" as I am not sure that is the right word given the tragedy in here) the film is closely linked to how much you care for the protagonist. I almost did not care for her at all because of the actress and how the character was written. This film was even nominated for an Oscar and maybe the only film with a minimal chance to upset the far superior Danish entry. I am truly glad it did not. This movie here is one you really wanna skip. Even if you are a bit of an Oscar completionist like myself, there are many, many others you should go for before checking this one out. I give it a thumbs-down, but who knows, maybe you are also one of the many who will like it. But as I just said, my suggestion is to go for a documentary instead of seeing this one and it's another bad thing probably that it will take many more years for another film on this subject with this (allegedly) good movie delaying things now because many filmmakers think they cannot come up with something better. Go for it, if you read this. I'm sure you can. For Srebrenica.

Reviewed by lee_eisenberg 10 / 10

interpretation in desperate moments

As an interpreter, I took a special interest in Jasmila Zbanic's Academy Award-nominated "Quo vadis, Aida?". The protagonist is an interpreter in Srebrenica during the 1995 siege. In the process of interpreting between the townspeople and peacekeeping forces, she gains some important information.

The movie serves as a look at the horrors of that siege, but also the decisions that interpreters must make in desperate moments. My field of interpretation has never seen anything as severe as what the movie depicts. Nevertheless, it's an important focus on the sheer terror of the situation in 1990s Bosnia (although I doubt that any movie can fully show the horror of it).

Definitely see it.

Reviewed by evanston_dad 9 / 10

Gut Wrenching

I'm not proud to say it, but I was barely paying attention to the war in Bosnia when it was happening. "Quo Vadis, Aida?" brings it right into your living room with all the immediacy of a documentary. It's a gut wrenching, sensational film.

Jasna Djuricic carries the entire movie as Aida, a U. N. translator who spends the entire film trying to use her minimal influence to keep her husband and two sons safe. The movie isn't about the Bosnian war in general but rather about the events leading up to a massacre in Srebenica. Substitute school buses for train cars and the whole episode was chillingly reminiscent of something you would have seen during the Holocaust. The movie is a matter of fact rendering of the desperation and chaos surrounding that terrible event, and it's refreshing to find a movie that knows its subject is powerful enough to speak for itself without needing to manipulate our feelings with a bunch of cinematic editorializing.

In no scene is this choice more effective than the one that finds Aida wandering around a room with a bunch of other women who've been asked to identify piles of bones that used to be their male relations.

And that last scene. Good Lord. I can't even imagine sitting at a school concert among the very men who murdered my family. It's movies like this that make me feel like I've literally never had a real problem in my entire life.

Grade: A.

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