About Lost Country

by Olivier Pélisson

By mixing personal and historical narratives Vladimir Perišić trenscends a teenager’s inner turmoil as he is caught between his love for his mother and his burgeoning political beliefs. The power of fiction is as gripping as the tragic reality in the director’s moving comeback, a laser-sharp account of not so distant past events. As for Jovan Ginic and Jasna Durićić, their facial expressions are seared in our mind’s eye and pierce through our heart and soul. 

Interview with Vladimir Perišić

“It’s been somewhat of a dry spell since Ordinary People, but it passed rather quickly as I created a publishing house, a film festival, and taught at Belgrade University. I started working on Lost Country as early as 2016; it has been rather difficult to find funding. The project stems from what I carry around, from my own personal story, and from films such as Robert Bresson’s Mouchette and Roberto Rossellini’s Germany, Year Zero, which helped me structure the story.

I wanted to investigate a double allegiance: allegiance to our mother, and allegiance to some ethical imperative. The seeds of that story were already present in my short film Dremano oko. I had chosen a father as the political authority figure, which made it easier. Standing up to one’s father is a compulsory and liberating rite of passage. But for me, dealing with a mother is much more difficult, because, in the 1990, my mother was a politician in this extremely patriarchal Serbian society.  

What interests me is our flimsy ability to acknowledge reality. Despite everything, there is still a denial in Serbia about the crimes committed in the 1990s. With Ordinary People, my goal was to film that denial as the crimes were being committed. Lost Country happens afterwards, but the events in Kosovo take place three years later. The film is set in the interval between these crimes. 

I had seen 1,500 kids before I found Jovan Ginic in a waterpolo club. I rehearsed with him a lot, filming and observing him. I think we forged a beautiful friendship while I did everything to look out for him. As for Jasna Duricic, she had acted in Dremano oko, and she brings all the authority of a female politician.”  

At La Semaine de La Critique

Lost Country


Feature Film

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