Anthology Film Archives


November 3 – November 10


Six years after the first retrospectives in the U.S. devoted to the work of Želimir Žilnik were presented at Harvard Film Archive and Anthology Film Archives, the original iconoclast of Yugoslav-Serbian cinema and the enfant terrible of the Black Wave returns to New York to continue a career-spanning survey of his uncompromising and politically-engaged films. Renowned as a master of interventionist nonfiction and a pioneer of hybrid documentary techniques, Žilnik – still (extremely) active at 81 years old – is a true elder statesman of independent European cinema. His work for the big and the small screen is always positioned on the side of the marginalized and underserved, and his aesthetics are always a function of his desire to empower people and create awareness and empathy for their lived experiences.

This selection of films picks up where we left off in 2017 and focuses on works that were not screened at that earlier retrospective. Spanning the 1970s to the present day, from Germany to Austria, through Serbia and Siberia, the retrospective demonstrates how this internationalist cineaste links worlds in his mission to uplift our collective human condition.

This retrospective is part of a coast-to-coast U.S. tour for Želimir Žilnik. The New York presentation includes two other events on Saturday, November 4: the international symposium “The Avant-Garde Does Not Surrender: The Cinema of Želimir Žilnik”, at Columbia University (organized by Aleksandar Bošković), and a program of short films by Žilnik at e-flux Screening Room. Screenings co-sponsored by the East Central European Center at the Harriman Institute, Columbia University.

Organized by Greg de Cuir Jr, co-founder and artistic director of Kinopravda Institute in Belgrade.

Special thanks to Želimir Žilnik & Sarita Matijević, as well as to Haden Guest (Harvard Film Archive); Lukas Brasiskis (e-flux); Ernest Larsen & Sherry Millner, and Aleksandar Bošković (Columbia University).

Želimir Žilnik will be here in person following the screenings of THE SECOND GENERATION on Fri, Nov 3 and THE MOST BEAUTIFUL COUNTRY IN THE WORLD on Tues, Nov 7. The Q&A on Nov 3 will be moderated by series guest-curator Greg de Cuir Jr., while the Q&A on Nov 7 will be moderated by Dijana Jelača, Lecturer in Cinema Studies in the Film Department at Brooklyn College, City University of New York.

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