23/05/2008 03:33

Retrospective of a Domestic Author - Živojin Pavlović

Several works of Yugoslavian and Serbian film art, of the anthology of Živojin Pavlović, is going to be shown in Cinema City Festival, in Retrospective of a Domestic Author Selection in Arena cinema. Pavlović, with few other cult directors, marked the the black wave of the seventh art on these territories during the sixties and the seventies, and among many bunker movies, his Povratak (The Reurn) and Zaseda (Ambush) appeared. However, the fall of communism did not change much in the life of this artist because during the nineties, he was still prosecuted, this time by nationalists.

“My whole life I stepped against the current, and made every step by pulling the legs with great effort out of the mud”, Pavlović demystified his life attitudes, the fights with the surroundings caused by them, and the rebellious character of a critic of illogicality and dissonance in the development of the society he was a part of.

The moment they got to the scene, the members of, at the time, young generation of film creators was equal in the quality and power of its narration to so much more renowned celluloid masters. Pavlović stood out with his creative temperament, as well as with the themes of his movies, mostly social dramas about marginal characters, incapable to adjust to social and living circumstances. However, an extremely critic attitude of great young intelligence was out of favour of old and dull socialist way of thinking of so called public directors who used film to build statues to Tito and the Party, so it was on their initiative that witch hunt, that is, high censorship of open-minded art began. Pavlović’s Zaseda (Ambush) was put into a bunker as the most drastic example of the black wave. On the other hand, controversially, the author won numerous prestigious awards, such as Golden Arena in Pula Festival (for Buđenje pacova (The Awakening of the Rats) 1967, Kada budem mrtav i beo (When I Am Dead and White) 1968, Crveno klasje (Red Ears) 1971...). He also won in his career Golden Lion in Venice, Silver Bear in Berlinale, and Golden Olive in Bastia.

He was born in 1933 in Sabac. He was educated for the career of a painter at the Faculty of Applied Arts in Belgrade, but when he was only 19, he started to write film analyses for daily newspapers and magazines. When he as 25, he made an amateur movie called Ljuba Popović, and only three years later, he had his first chance in an omnibus called

Kapi, vode, ratnici (Drops, Water, Wariors), and immediately won a special jury prize of, at the time, prominent Pula Festival. He made fifteen movies in total, and published 32 books, mostly novels and short stories, and diary notes. He was also a professor at the Faculty of Drama Arts in Belgrade. He was a father of Milena Pavlović, little Marina, from the hit film Mi nismo anđeli (We Are not Angels). He died in 1998 in Belgrade, before the end of the shooting of his last movie, Drzava mrtvih (Land of the Dead), which was later finished by his ex student, Dinko Tucaković.