Sunday, August 28, 2016


Jolie Earns Serbian Scorn For War Film

Angelina Jolie at the premiere of "In the Land of Blood and Honey" in Los Angeles in December
Angelina Jolie at the premiere of "In the Land of Blood and Honey" in Los Angeles in December

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Video Bosnia War Victims Praise New Jolie Film

Hollywood star Angelina Jolie's directorial debut, "In the Land of Blood and Honey," tells the story of an ethnically mixed couple that is torn apart by the country's civil war. Initially, victims' groups resisted the film. On December 8, Jolie brought the film to Sarajevo for a special screening.
By RFE/RL's Balkan Service
She’s known internationally as one of Hollywood’s highest-paid actresses; she’s won praise from governments and NGOs across the globe for her work as a goodwill ambassador for the United Nations; and she’s often reckoned to be the world’s most beautiful woman.

But Angelina Jolie has been going by a few other titles lately in the Balkan country of Serbia, where prominent media outlets have taken to describing her as an American propagandist and all-around "jerk."

The nationalistic furor stems from Jolie's recent debut as a screenwriter and director with “In the Land of Blood and Honey,” a fictionalized account of the Bosnian war.

Jolie and the film are now at the center of a furious debate in Serbia over the nation’s most sensitive political issue: the violent breakup of Yugoslavia in the early 1990s and the degree of Serbia’s responsibility for ethnic cleansing campaigns against Muslim and Croat civilians during the Bosnian war.

Key voices in the Serbian media have said that Jolie’s story of a doomed wartime romance between a Muslim woman and a Serbian army officer unfairly denigrates ethnic Serbs and spins the conflict from a distinctly anti-Serb perspective.

Film director Emir Kusturica recently told “Blic,” a Serbian daily, that Jolie’s new film is a work of “Hollywood propaganda.” His comments came as the Belgrade tabloid “Kurir” ran an interview with Bata Zivojinovic -- a veteran Yugoslav actor, former member of the Serbian parliament, and longtime Slobodan Milosevic ally -- under the blaring headline, "Angelina Is A Jerk."

A scene from "In the Land of Blood and Honey"A scene from "In the Land of Blood and Honey"
A scene from "In the Land of Blood and Honey"
A scene from "In the Land of Blood and Honey"
“Vecernje Novosti,” a newspaper partly owned by the Serbian government, refrained from criticizing Jolie personally but called her film a piece of “political agitprop” and noted that it had touched off “the largest political film scandal in the past few decades in the region.”

Serbian actor Dragan Bjelogrlic wrote in the paper that Jolie’s interpretation of events was “superficial” and claimed that he walked out of a screening of the movie after half an hour.

'Nobody Has Seen The Movie'

But now some Serbs are beginning to speak up in Jolie’s defense. Serbian film director Stevan Filipovic, whose 2010 film “Sisanje” sparked controversy at home over its portrayal of the Serbian right, says the attacks on Jolie and her film are consistent with a general tide of Serbian nationalism.
This is an old recipe. We have seen it used a million times by nationalists.

"This is an old recipe. We have seen it used a million times by nationalists," he told RFE/RL's Balkan Service. "The ridiculous thing is the fact that nobody has seen the movie, and they base their opinion on scenes from the trailer. Most of them never even saw the trailer, but they choose to declare it an anti-Serb movie, because that’s the way things go around here."

At least one prominent Bosnian Serb who did see the movie has given it a rave review.

Dragisa Andric was a prisoner in Sarajevo’s notorious Viktor Bubanj detention center during the war and is now an activist and spokesman for Serb war victims. He attended a special December screening in Sarajevo and told RFE/RL at the time that he was "deeply moved" by the film.

"In the Land of Blood and Honey" was nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Foreign Film but overlooked in this week's Academy Award nominations. It opens across the Balkans in February.

Written by Charles Dameron
This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments page of 4
by: Goran from: Republic of Srpska
January 25, 2012 12:49
The beginning of the film skips muslim terorism (slotering all around, even at weddings) before anything happened, probably not to confuse the audience's bad atitude about serbs. This is not helping us to go on with what happened. Jolie abused us all for her own sake, or maybe some other parties abused her to make such propagand presedan (Obama greets this). Lies won`t set us free (300 000 and 50 000 numbers at the end of film and perspective used in scenario). This is call for war saying: GO KILL ALL SERBS, EVERYONE SAYS IT`S OK, and go on bombing muslims around the oil marked globe, we have one more exuse, we are not against muslim people (Seriously sick behaving ). I`m serb, and I think we`ll need person like Mandela and Martin Luther King to stop this misery. The way the things go, we`ll need to think twice before we choose the place to sit in bus.
Greetings from serb, not proud for myself, even less for America.

by: John from: NE Ohio
January 25, 2012 14:44
“Most analysts agree that all sides committed atrocities­. On the rare occasions we see Bosnian fighters in “In the Land of Blood and Honey,” they come off as a likable ragtag band, while the better-arm­ed and better-org­anized Serb forces are presented as preening and sadistic fascists, continuall­y drunk and singing nationalis­tic songs.

When you show bloody civil war from only one side, than it is wine sided.

Muslims and killing Serbs and Croats in the areas where they where majority, Croats whet killing Serbs and Muslims in the are where they where Majority(n­ot to many in Bosnia), and Serbs where doing the same.

Population was about 45% Muslim, 40% Serbian and 15% Croat. Each Side had their share of atrocities­!

She’s playing favorites, and drawing on cinematic and historical archetypes­.

I wish to correct what I observed, especially the I will leave the artistic side to those who are more qualified. Sex, violence, distortion of historic facts and fabricatio­n appear alive and well in Hollywood as cinematic tricks are used to distract and “entertain­” us. This film stinks the same way as "Behind the enemy lines".
It will be almost if somebody makes a movie about war in Iraq and only presents US soldiers as a Abu Ghraib psycho guards!”
In Response

by: JJ
January 30, 2012 18:22
John you seem unaware that the Muslims and Croats fought their own very intense war from October 1992 through late February 1994, and only made (an uneasy) peace because of pressure and bribes from the west. Today Croats and Muslims go to separate classes or schools and Croats are complaining about discrimination of Catholics in Sarajevo and other Muslim-dominated parts. Croats are still leaving the Croat-Muslim Federation and much of it is due to discrimination and pressure by the Muslims.
The Croat and Muslim war areas were some of the most devastated parts of Bosnia, such as Mostar.
Actually it was the Serbs who allowed the Muslim-surrounded Croats to pass through their lines (and armed) during and intense part of the Croat-Muslim war.

But in the beginning of the war the Croats allied with the Muslims to drive out Croats. Croatia sent their army in and it was an open secret that Croatia had entire brigades stationed in Bosnia throughout the war.

The Croats set up camps immediately and were torturing and killing civilians Serbs. Last year in the U.S. they arrested a Croatian army woman (who is ethnic Muslim), named AZRA BASIC, who, with the Croat army, attacked Bosnian Serbs on Easter 1992 and set up concentration camps. This woman is accused of abusing in at least 3 camps the Croatian army had for Serbs in the first several months of the war.

Fact is the Catholics/Croats worked with Muslims against the Serbs and they have a repeated history of allying to kill Serbs.
It is not Christian-like the religion the way Croats practice it.

by: ana from: belgrade
January 25, 2012 14:52
If someone wants to make a movie on historical facts, a lot of knowledge about lives and destinies of all those involved in a conflict should be known. A sad thing would be if a writer/director does something without knowing all the facts. It makes the movie a product of lack of respect towards victims, towards blood and tears shed in the war, and a product of a pure unprofessionalism.We,the people of ex Yugoslavia are fed up with stories about the war, we want to heal our wounds so we can continue with our lives.

by: Jack from: US
January 25, 2012 15:14
I doubt Jolie had any other choice but to make the film along US government propaganda lines. Surely she would not want to sacrifice her potential career as Holywood film director by showing the truth which contradicts the US government "party line"

by: Mila
January 25, 2012 15:23
For the truth to be told, a Bosnia truth commission is long overdue. Relying on Angelina Jolie's take on war events in Bosnia is absurd. Actually, a truth commission is needed for all of what occurred in former Yugoslavia. Much shocking truth would be revealed. Jolie's movie only serves to further dumb down the already dumbed down.

by: vn from: Belgrade
January 25, 2012 16:28
The price Serbia had to pay is that Serbian movie "Montevideo Bog te video" (Montevideo, My God) directed by Dragan Bjelogrlic (better known as actor), did not get nominated for Oscar award as the best non-English speaking movie.

by: John
January 25, 2012 23:12
You serious Serb, its not just the muslims you bombed. Its also Croats, did you for get they were Christian and Catholic. Did you think the world was going to sit back and let you run around like mad dogs. It doesnt take voer night to forgive you for your desctruction. Its not your first time in history too. Your country got used to being a kingdom style country. In 1913 you joined your Balkan neighbers to occupy Macedonia. Last time check people lose lives in occupatins. After Serbia got bombed by a big nation did you realise to stop your madness so dont act like the victim now. DONT CRY.
In Response

by: Sale from: Belgrade
January 26, 2012 16:21
You show that you are not familiar with historical facts. You are unfortunately indoctrinated by global propaganda media like CNN, BBC and other liars. I do not want to pursue that we are right (although historical fact support us), I just want to ask you a question. If we are "mad dogs" and people of destruction why USA was our ally in two world wars? Why did USA confronted with Croats, Bosnian Muslims and Albanians during the First and Second World War? Elaborate it please.
In Response

by: Blackbird from: California
January 26, 2012 18:17
Honestly, the tedium we have to endure from the likes of "John!" Ignoramuses are everywhere and "John: and Angelina both fall into that category and epitomes of the adage that A Little Knowledge is a Dangerous Thing. The lack of information, the lack of imagination (!) leaves such an empty chasm in both of them that it's not worthwhile even to respond. You can talk until you're blue in the face about the theory of relativity but if the people you're talking to have no clue who Einstein is, you're wasting your precious time. They.....prefer....ignorance. They wallow in it.
In Response

by: John from: USA
January 27, 2012 02:32
I will just add this recent article, to point out that its not just your army/Government but actual citizens that cant control them selves also.
Really "trying to move on", you have a problem you cant solve. Nobody is going to listen to you guys anymore. Don't need to argue, Maybe you should have called Jolie and asked her questions instead of attacking her. WAKE UP
In Response

by: George
January 30, 2012 00:13
John, here's a better article, which deals with Bosnia and the other wars in former Yugo:
In Response

by: Bill Dorich from: Los Angeles
January 26, 2012 23:50
John Part 2

We now know that over 70,000 Serbs were ethnically cleansed from Croatia during those first months of war and that more than 5,000 Serbs were killed. In 1995, During Operation Storm which was aided and abetted by the U.S. military who turned off the radar enabling the Croats to bomb and strafe these fleeing Serbs, a war crime by every definition.

Today, Croatia like Slovenia is ethnically pure, Roman Catholic and Kosovo is nearly ethnically pure Albanian... and by the way, 40% of those Albanians are illegal aliens who were never citizens of former Yugoslavia and who crossed the border from Albania into Serbia each night just like Mexicans cross our borders in San Diego and El Paso. Pretending that because they now number 90% they somehow have more rights that people whose families have lived in Kosovo for a thousand years is more than outrageous.

Apparently you also need reminded that prior to 1913 at the Congress of Berlin in 1878 Serbia was internationally recognized as a nation. When WWI ended after the destruction of the Austrian Empire and Ottoman Empire, international politicians convinced the Serbs to share their nation with her former enemies and The Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes was formed in 1918 later renamed Yugoslavia.

Those Croats who were vassals of the Austrians ran into the arms of their Serbian enemies like rats fleeing a sinking ship, knowing full well that Austria was going to lose the war. The marriage created by the Kingdom of Serbia was like a shotgun marriage... doomed from the start. It was therefore no surprise that 25 years later the same Croats sided with Hitler and that Germany was the first country to recognize Croatian independence and why the Sieg Heil salute is alive and well today in Croatia. You can buy Nazi memorabilia on street corners in Zagreb.

With morons like you John, it appears that the media and the U.S. State Department can spoon you disinformation by the bowl full and you eat it like a lapdog.

Within the first 4 months of the violence in Croatia in 1991, 98 Serbian churches were destroyed, combined with the 410 that were raised 60 years ago by Croat Nazis who also murdered 470 Serbian priests and one of our bishops this is real... GENOCIDE. But to idiots like you the Serbs are now allowed to fight back?

No one was brought to justice for their war crimes 60 years ago and no one is being brought to justice today. In Fact, Ante Pavelic the president of the First Independent Nazi State of Croatia (1941) fled Croatia after the war through the Vatican "Ratline" for Argentina where he became the "Security Advisor" to Juan Peron who issued 34,000 visas to Croatian war criminals including 740 Roman Catholic Priests who personally murdered Serbs, Jews and Gypsies with their own hands and fled to Argentina to escape justice.

I would say you certainly deserve the prize today as the most historically ignorant persons on this website. Do you ever crack a book? Or are you satisfied being as illiterate as you writing indicates? Now crawl back under you rock like a good little Nazi.
In Response

by: John from: USA
January 27, 2012 23:21
John Part 3 - Lets get to the bottom of this so everyone can see your view. Your history reading is not saving lives but diging more holes. Encourage you fellow Serbs. That its ok for its attacks.

Question: Why did serbs attack the Croatians. When Croatia which had declared independence from the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
Question: There was other countries in tYugo why didnt they help the Serbs attack Croatia.
Question: Why at the beginning of the war, the JNA tried to *****forcefully**** keep Croatia in Yugoslavia by occupying the whole of Croatia.

You reading old history doesnt solve people losing there lives to an occupation and people seeking independce from a worthless Yugo. Now everyone runs to EU b/c they are done with the Balkan bulls%$%t. Look you cant even control yourselves at sporting events. The people and country are going backwards with this mentality of destruction.
Serbian hooligans spoil European handball championships,,15698725,00.html
I cant help but laugh. Your write in english, hate US state department. ahahhaah your joke.

by: Jill Starr from: Bloomingdale NJ USA
January 26, 2012 09:29
What It’s Like to Chill Out With Whom the Rest of the World Considers As The Most Ruthless Men: Ratko Mladic, Goran Hadzic and Radovan Karadzic (+) Confessions of a Female War Crimes Investigator By Jill Louise Starr NJ USA

Retrospectively, it was all so simple, natural and matter of fact being on a boat restaurant in Belgrade, sitting with, laughing, drinking a two hundred bottle of wine and chatting about war and peace while Ratko Mladic held my hand. Mladic, a man considered the world’s most ruthless war criminal since Adolf Hitler, still at large and currently having a five million dollar bounty on his head for genocide by the international community. Yet there I was with my two best friends at the time, a former Serbian diplomat, his wife, and Ratko Mladic just chilling. There was no security, nothing you’d ordinarily expect in such circumstances. Referring to himself merely as, Sharko; this is the story of it all came about.
Diplomatic / International Relations Consultant & War Crimes Investigator
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Irrefutable Proof ICTY Is Corrupt Court/Irrefutable Proof the Hague Court Cannot Legitimately Prosecute Karadzic Case By Jill Starr
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This legal technicality indicates the Hague must dismiss charges against Dr Karadzic and others awaiting trials in the Hague jail; like it or not.

Unfortunately for the Signatures Of the Rome Statute United Nations member states instituting the ICC & ICTY housed at the Hague, insofar as the, Radovan Karadzic, as with the other Hague cases awaiting trial there, I personally witnessed these United Nations member states having a substantial conversations, and, openly speaking about trading judicial appointments and verdicts for financial funding when I attended the 2001 ICC Preparatory Meetings at the UN in Manhattan making the iCTY and ICC morally incapable trying Radovan Karazdic and others.

I witnessed with my own eyes and ears when attending the 2001 Preparatory Meetings to establish an newly emergent International Criminal Court, the exact caliber of criminal corruption running so very deeply at the Hague, that it was a perfectly viable topic of legitimate conversation in those meetings I attended to debate trading verdicts AND judicial appointments, for monetary funding.

by: Mila
January 26, 2012 15:02
John, obviously you're a hatefilled individual. So, you spout lies. You know very well what went on in WWII, and that it was Croatia that was allied with Hitler. Fast forward to the 1990s, and it was Germany and the Vatican that were the first to recognize an independent Croatia. That was not by coincidence, but well-planned from 1941 to 1991. If people are informed, they know that whole story. If not informed, it can also be found via the internet. So, John, don't lie. The truth will never die.
In Response

by: John from: USA
January 27, 2012 02:37
How was Yugo built on occupation or peaceful formation. You can not control people that dont want to be part of your system. Thats is my point. You went to war to control a nation that longer accepts you. The fact that they are Catholic people did you think the world was going to sit back and watch you guys. Wake Up and look around your little nation.
In Response

by: j p maher from: chicago
February 03, 2012 15:56
Josip (unmistakably Croatian name) Broz a hybrid Croat-Slovene was President for Life of the second Yugoslavia, supported by Germany, US, UK until they pulled the plug in 1990 1991... When I was in Dubrovnik in March 1992, wonderfully re-built after its "total destruction", a German feighter off-loaded a consignment of tanks from stores of the former East German Army, for "independent" Croatia. The populace didn't know. They had been given an air-raid alert and were deep in their cellars...

by: Vakhtang from: Moscow
January 26, 2012 16:32
The Rwandan Genocide was the 1994 mass murder of an estimated 1000,000 people in the small East African nation of Rwanda.

So Julie were are you??

time to make a film about love between a girl Tutsi and a boy Hutu.

I understand Julia you are not interested in Аfrica..

Оkay ...take Europe, in 1993, the Abkhaz tribes massacred 15 000 Georgian women, children and elderly- 2 times more than in Srebrenica.
I want you to tell Julia to your people that there are places in Europe where people are killed much more than in the former Yugoslavia.

But I think that this is not fashionable to talk in the U.S....more fashionable to talk about the brutal Serbs, well and shoot cheap melodrama in the style of fantasy.

Julia actress so-so, unfairly advertised and as a director is awful
You do not go into politics Julia!!Shoot shooters about Mr. and Mrs. Smith...
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