I don’t smoke, well not all the time anyway. However I can tell you that I needed a cigarette after viewing this. I no bloody prude, not by a country mile, but this film was almost a bridge too far for me. It challenged me like no other film I’ve seen before. Hollywood this ain’t. There are scenes here, and bear in mind this is the cut version, that’ll make your fucking head spin. I always thought I could pretty much watch anything that the film world could throw at me, but this was by far one of, if the toughest things I’ve had to endure.
I’m not bigging this up you understand? Certain films have done that in the past. Both A Clockwork Orange and Last House on the Left have been touted to being very hard to watch. Not for me. Maybe I’ve become desensitised I don’t know, but both the aforementioned movies did little to shock me. A Serbian Film is a different beast.
The film begins with retired porn star Milos (Srdjan Todorovic) being approached by an old friend with an offer to star in a new porn film. Being touted as ‘art porn’ by it’s director Vukmir (Sergej Trifunovic), the film will require Milos to just do what he does best. He is offered a lot of money but not told what the film is about as Vukmir believes he’ll elicit a more honest performance. Milos is not comfortable with the idea of not knowing what the film is about as he has a wife and small child and doesn’t want anything to jeopardise that. When Milos tells his wife how much money he was offered she encourages him to take the role. The film starts off tame enough, but as it goes on Vukmir gets Milos to commit more depraved acts in the name of art. When Milos tries to back out, it kick starts a series of brutal events which will not end well. Milos becomes a man who realised he lost his soul years ago, and his attempt at redemption only drags him further into despair.
I don’t think I’ll watch this again. Majority of movies I will always return to in time, but with A Serbian Film I don’t see what benefits repeated viewings would bring. I am not overplaying this, A Serbian Film really is messed up indeed. All of the actors are on top form, acting in what are some very tough scenes. I don’t happen to agree with the director saying that the movie was an allegory on how the government ‘mentally’ rapes its people, but maybe I was just so stunned by what I was seeing that I failed to see any deeper meaning. This copy was graciously provided by the kind folks over at http://www.safecrackerpictures.com. Please stop by and follow them on twitter @SafecrackerP for competitions and film news.