A humanist mission out of control: in July 1995 Bosnian Serb militias murdered more than 8,500 Bosniaks in Srebrenica. Golden Bear winner Jasmila Žbanić traces the tragic story from the perspective of a translator who tries to save her family.
The most serious war crime in Europe after the Second World War took place in front of completely overwhelmed UN soldiers. The Dutch blue helmet unit was given the runaround by Serbian general Ratko Mladić, and the subsequent victims were deceived: they were promised that they would be brought to a Muslim-controlled area. Žbanić records the conflict before the violence becomes completely excessive. Moments spent between desperate waiting and anxious hope. Here people who are just as exposed to the cynicism of their subsequent murderers as they are to the idleness of their supposed protectors. There the arbitrary aggression that will soon degenerate into a pure lust to kill. 25 years later the European trauma of the Yugoslav Wars, which culminated in the Srebrenica massacre, is almost forgotten. Whilst relatives of the victims, like Aida, are left alone to deal with lonely grief, ritualised commemoration, a desire for atonement and the call for forgiveness. BB
Christine A. Maier
Małgorzata Karpiuk, Ellen Lens
Jasna Đuričić, Izudin Bajrović, Boris Isaković, Johan Heldenbergh, Raymond Thiry, Boris Ler, Dino Bajrović, Emir Hadžihafizbegović, Edita Malovčić