04/06/2010 09:40

Importance of film in promoting culture

A word from Austrian ambassador in Serbia – Dr. Clemens Koja

Tribute: Austrian Cinema selection will present some of the most significant achievements by renowned Austrian directors. Films from Tribute: Austrian Cinema selection will be screened at main hall of Youth Theatre from June 8th till June 12th starting at 20:00h. Entrance is free as is for all projections at this location. Selection was realized with support of Austrian Development Agency (ADA) for the purpose of better acquainting domestic audience with Austrian culture and cinematography. As a part of this cooperation, Austrian ambassador in Serbia, Dr. Clemens Koja will present on June 12, prime award of the Cinema City Festival, Grand Prix for best domestic feature from National Class selection. On this occasion we talked with Austrian ambassador. Find out about importance of film in promoting a nation’s cultural heritage and Dr. Clemens Koja’s personal recommendation to the visitors of Cinema City Festival.

In your opinion, to what extent does film art contribute to promoting a nation’s cultural heritage and in what way do you think will the Austrian film selection within our Festival contribute to better acquainting and connecting Austrian culture with Serbian?

Culture is an instrument to communicate our position in Europe in an understandable and perceptible manner. I am proud to say that cultural diversity is one of the most noteworthy traits of the Austrian cinematography. This goes both for the themes selected and for the authors who create within the “Austrian team”. Some of the most prominent authors from Austria are Serbian as Goran Rebic, Iranian as Arash T. Riahi and Polish as Dariusz Gajewski.

Thanks to the Film Festivals as this one, the international public will get to see most significant Austrian films, which have passed a very sharp selection of the local and national public and critics. In that sense, film takes a very important role in the cultural promotion of every country and region.

I know that the Serbian festival public is fond of the European film. Films from Austria have recently become notably present at the international film festivals in Serbia, as well as in the cinemas, as a part of the repertoire. I am positive that the Austrian film selection at the Cinema City will satisfy the high criteria of film admirers in Serbia. I would also like to announce the Austrian Film Week organized by the Austrian Cultural forum in Belgrade in October 2010. This festival will feature a selection of 10 extraordinary films, produced mostly by the younger generation of Austrian cinematographers.

Which film from Tribute: Austrian Cinema selection would you personally recommend to the visitors of our Festival?

I would certainly recommend the film DAS WEIßE BAND awarded at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival with Palme d’Or and the winner of the Best European film, best director at the European Film Rewards.

This is an Austrian – German – French - Italian coproduction, directed by Michael Haneke, one of Austria's most esteemed and most controversial active filmmaker. Haneke is also a professor of directing at the Vienna Film Academy. His films often document problems and failures in modern society.

The movie is set in 1913 and deals with strange incidents in a small town in Northern Germany, depicting an authoritarian atmosphere, where children are subjected to rigid rules and suffer harsh punishments, and where strange deaths occur...