Posts Tagged ‘Dino Bajrovic’

A Mother’s Anguish

Quo Vadis, Aida?

Director: Jasmila Zbanic

Cast: Jasna Djuricic, Izudin Bajrovic, Boris Ler, Dino Bajrovic, Johan Helderbergh, Raymond Thiry, Boris Isakovic

Running Time: 102 minutes

This film is in English, Serbian, Dutch and Bosnian with English Subtitles

Please note that this film is not for sensitive viewers

In possibly the toughest watch in the 2021 European Film Festival is the Bosnian war film Quo Vadis, Aida? Which translates to Where are you going Aida?

Nominated for Best Foreign Language Film at the 2021 Oscars, is director Jasmila Zbanic’s heartwrenching retelling of the Srebrenica massacre in Quo Vadis, Aida? featuring a brilliant performance by Jasna Djuricic as the English speaking Bosnian translater Aida.

Jasna Djuricic should have received an Oscar nomination for Best Actress at the 2021 Academy Awards because her performance rivals that of Oscar winner Meryl Streep in Sophie’s Choice.

Quo Vadis, Aida? had it’s world premiere at the 2020 Venice International Film Festival and then was also screened at the Toronto Film Festival the same year.

As the Serb and Bosnian conflict reached its peak in the summer of 1995, the Serbian army overran the town of Srebrenica and immediately Aida who works as a Translator for the UN realizes that the population of this town is in desperate need of being saved.

Unfortunately, an ill-equipped Dutch run UN base is all that is guarding the inhabitants of Srebrenica from being annihilated by the Serbian army. On the 11th July 1995, the Srebrenica massacre occurred in which over 8000 men and boys were murdered and then buried in mass graves.

Told through the unflinching eyes of a desperate mother, Aida, a UN Translator is desperately trying to protect her husband Nihad played by Izudin Bajrovic and her two sons, Hamdjia played by Boris Ler and Sejo played by Dino Bajrovic from the Serbian army as the defenceless Dutch make a devil’s bargain with the Serbian army and allow them into the UN compound which is meant to be a safe zone.

Colonel Karremans played by Belgium actor Johan Heldenbergh (The ZooKeeper’s Wife) is out of his depth in a humanitarian crisis which is rapidly spiraling into a complete disaster receiving no guidance or support from those organizational superiors in the UN at the time, all of whom seem to be away on summer holidays.

Aida pleads with Colonel Karremans to save her two sons and her husband, sensing that something utterly tragic is about to unfold.

Director Jasmila Zbanic makes a sharp and harrowing film about a terrible event, which highlights more the ineffectiveness of a huge organization like the United Nations in times of ethnic cleansing, conflict and genocide in the face of humanity’s diabolical capacity for cruelty and violence.

Quo Vadis, Aida? gets a film rating of 9 out of 10 and is a superb film, but not for sensitive viewers. Highly recommended viewing about a horrific period of human history in the mid 1990’s.

Historical source:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Srebrenica_massacre

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