Pjer Žalica's Labor Day from April 20 in Croatian cinemas
The new film by director Pjer Žalica will hit Croatian cinemas on April 20
Crowned with the Grand Prix at the 38th edition of the International Film Festival in Warsaw last October, the film Labor Day (Praznik rada) achieved a record viewership in the opening weekend in Bosnia and Herzegovina cinemas and became the most watched domestic film in the last decade. After the impressive numbers in BiH cinemas, the audience award at the Ljubljana International Film Festival LIFFE followed, which once again confirmed that the regional audience welcomes Pjer Žalica's films with open arms.
The Sarajevo filmmaker's fourth feature film is also the final part of his unofficial series about the impact of war on the lives of people in Bosnia and Herzegovina. And while the director's debut „Gori vatra“ (2003) dealt with the consequences of the war for the generation that actively lived through the terrible period, his next film – „Kod amidže Idriza“ (2004) - dealt with the effects of the war on the older generation, whose children died in the war.
In the film Labor Day, the focus is also on the upcoming generation, the one that was just born during the war, and which, in an effort to start a better life, freed from the legacy of war and ethnic conflicts, leaves the family environment eroded by political, economic and economic crises.
The plot, set in a typical „Sarajevo mahal“, introduces viewers to a series of characters whose neighborliness and proverbial humorous approach to everyday life is stirred up by a sudden unpleasant event. Their neighbor Fudo is unexpectedly arrested, and while everyone is wondering why, articles are published in the newspaper that he is suspected of a war crime. At the same time, Fuda's son Armin arrives in Bosnia unannounced from Germany after ten years, bringing his wife. But the surprise he was preparing for his father remains overshadowed by the news. And while „mahal“continues with preparations for Labor Day, and Armin tries to find out the truth about the event in which his father participated thirty years ago, the past comes to light again, accompanied by lot of unspoken questions.
This "tragedy that tries to become a comedy", as the director himself describes the film, was filmed in the Sarajevo district of Bjelave, in the neighborhood where Žalica himself grew up, and his brother, the writer and poet Antonije Nino Žalica, who participated in the making of the film as assistant director, wrote the text of the song about Bjelave for this occasion.
A film in which there are no main or supporting roles is played by an experienced team - Emir Hadžihafizbegović, Admir Glamočak, Boris Isaković, Aleksandar Seksan, Mirvad Kurić, Jasna Žalica, Tatjana Šojić, Dženita Imamović Omerović, Vedran Đekić, Branka Katić, Ermin Bravo, Branimir Popović and Adnan Goro, and the role of Armin is played by Muhamed Hadžović, an increasingly prominent Sarajevo actor and director of „Kamerni Teatar 55“.
The film was co-produced by Bosnia and Herzegovina (Udruženje Forum), Croatia (Lana Matić, Boris T. Matić, Propeler Film), North Macedonia (Sisters and Brother Mitevski Production), Serbia (Backroom Production & Baš Čelik) and Montenegro (Aba Film & Artikulacija Film).
The distributor of the film is the Zagreb Film Festival.
HAVC Press Release, 2023