It has been some years since Tanović won an Oscar for his 2001 feature No Man’s Land; while it is unlikely that Death in Sarajevo will attract similar attention, its failure to do so should in no way reflect its quality.
Death in Sarajevo is a hyper-intelligent if slightly abstruse satire that dares to comment on the legacy of violence that followed Franz Ferdinand’s assassination a century ago.
Tanović’s powerful film mostly takes place in a hotel where each of its characters function to epitomise the various contradictions, contrivances, and ideological affectations that has led to wars past and present.
Tanović’s highly literate, complex satire seeks to interrogate its audience, unafraid to look it in the eye as if down the barrel of a gun.
CAST: Snežana Marković, Izudin Bajrović
DIRECTOR: Danis Tanović
WRITERS: Danis Tanović, Bernard-Henri Lévy (play)
SYNOPSIS: The commemoration of the assassination that sent the world to war is the foundation upon which surviving conflicts are brought to light.
Death in Sarajevo was reviewed as part of One Room With A View’s coverage of the 66th Berlinale Film Festival, which runs 11-21 February 2016.