New York City, March 2023 — The Bosnian-Herzegovinian Film Festival (BHFF) in New York City is excited to announce the lineup for its 2023 edition. From a large number of films submitted to BHFF for consideration, a total of twelve films were selected into the festival’s final program. The 19th Annual festival will also include a series of interactive Q&A’s and discussion events with filmmaker guests, running from Wednesday, April 12th through Saturday, April 15th in person at the SVA Theatre in New York City. Tickets go on sale soon.
BHFF PROGRAM 2023
SVA Presentation 1
Wednesday, April 12, 2023 - 7:30 PM
2022 | Aida Begić | 120 min
Merjem-Meri (30), an unambitious housewife and mother of the girl Mila (8), returns to her family after ten years of married life. Soon after returning to her parent's house, Meri realizes that she is trapped in a vicious cycle of provincial laws and rules, as well as in the complex relationship between her ambitious mother and her spoiled younger brother. Her hope of getting custody of her daughter is diminishing every day, because she has no chance to find a permanent job. The only thing that makes her happy, and for which everyone judges her, is going to an audition for a movie that is being made in the neighborhood.
Followed by Q&A with the director Aida Begić
SVA Presentation 2
Thursday, April 13, 2023 - 7:30 PM
2021 | Alma Cocaj | 18 min
As a foreigner passing the quarantine in Bosnia & Herzegovina, the temptation of isolation and the need to communicate with society makes Alma follow her neighbors from the window of her room. At the same time thoughts about the past and childhood flash before her eyes. The only communication she has with her family is by phone screens. Alma’s mother is not happy with her daughter’s new look after she sees that Alma cut her hair. In an expedition to retrieve her lost wallet and buy cigarettes, Alma has a chance encounter with a seemingly like-minded person.
Neki novi Brodvej
2020 | Denis Bojić | 88 min
The film follows six people with Down syndrome in Bosnia and Herzegovina who, overcoming numerous obstacles, are among the first in Southeast Europe to become students in a professional acting school, thus breaking down prejudices and barriers about the possibilities and abilities of people with Down syndrome.
An amazing story about the steadfastness of the human spirit and faith in your own abilities will take you on a journey after which you will not be the same.
SVA Presentation 3
Friday, April 14, 2023 - 6:00 PM
2022 | Farah Hasanbegović | 8 min
Can we be born guilty? Starting from the account of a medical condition, the author uses animation to search for the origin of the elements of the story we tell ourselves about our life. Through eloquent pencil strokes, Ribs is a sensorial mediation on the material dimension of our feelings.
Podsjećanje: Meditacija na Triptih
2022 | Amra Hećo | 10 min
A chance encounter with discovered video footage from 1983 of the Bosnian town Tešanj triggers unexpected emotions as the filmmaker recognizes her grandfather who died in the 90s during the war. This opens old wounds but also creates opportunities for healing.
Naša porodična bašta
2022 | Smirna Kulenović | 40 min
Our Family Garden is a powerful documentary that follows the journey of 100 women from Bosnia, Serbia, Croatia, and various European countries who came together in August 2021 to plant 1000 calendula plants in abandoned war trenches on the front line of defense on Zlatište hill, Sarajevo. The women, survivors of the siege, reject constant victimization and instead choose peace and solidarity with all kinds of life in the traumatized ecosystem. Through this artistic-activist project, the film explores the role of women as bearers of new changes and the possibility of healing both society and the environment. With new wars drawing violence into the collective consciousness and environment, Our Family Garden is a timely exploration of the possibilities of overcoming war trauma.
Followed by Q&A with the director Smirna Kulenović
SVA Presentation 4
Friday, April 14, 2023 - 8:30 PM
Najsretniji čovjek na svijetu
2020 | Teona Strugar Mitevska | 95 min
Followed by Q&A with the screenwriter Elma Tataragić
SVA Presentation 5
Saturday, April 15, 2023 - 6:00 PM
2022 | Sara Ristić | 8 min
Short Narrative Films
During a chaotic cleaning of their apartment because of impending guests, mom Esma is berating her daughter Ena for not cleaning the “proper” way. Ena is sent to buy groceries, but on the way from the market, she gets whisked away into a magical world as she searches for the origin of a mysterious sound.
2022 | Isam Karahasanović | 14 min
Short Narrative Films
2021 | Aleksandra Odić | 22 min
Short Narrative Films
Followed by Q&A with the director of Frida, Aleksandra Odić
2022 | Siniša Grabež | 25 min
SVA Presentation 6
Saturday, April 15, 2023 - 8:15 PM
2022 | Pjer Žalica | 113 min
The screening will be followed by the BHFF Awards Ceremony