Saturday, January 16, 2010


Duga; Animated drama, Croatia, 2010; D: Joško Marušić, S: Krešimir Mikić (voice)

A driver stops his car with his two children near Sinj in the middle of the night. The story then shows the dark history of that town: in 1715, the Ottoman Empire started a siege of the town to conquer it again, but two children had the idea to project the drawn face of a woman on glass on the clouds, which scares the Turks who decide to withdraw. From there on, Sinj celebrates the Sinjska alka every year, a knight tournament. In the 19th Century, teenage girl Srna feels isolated in Sinj and flees to her dreamworld. At the same time, lad Salka wants to impress the older girl Marta, but get disappointed when she marries his father, Rašica. He leaves the town, while Srna drowns while swimming in order to pass under the rainbow. Back in the present, the driver resumes his journey.

After a long pause, the Croatian cinema finally extracted another feature length animated film, "Rainbow" by director Joško Marušić, which gained a solid amount of attention it its homeland. As an alternative to the US animation, "Rainbow" feels and looks rather exotic, revolving around the history of Sinj in the 18th and 19th Century, openly embracing the culture, mentality and traditions of the city, even backward ones, though it is more suited for the mature audience since it shows some dark moments (during the Turkish siege of Sinj in 1715, there's a scene where the Turkish soldiers hold decapitated heads on their spears; tailor-woman Sava whose upper parts of her fingers of her right hand were bitten off by a pig when she was still a child...). With opulent animation and music, the movie flows nicely and not even the fact that it has only one voice throughout the entire story, the one of the narrator, can't be considered a setback, since it is sufficient to show the perspective of them all, but the film is uneven and lost itself in too many characters, whereas it simply needed more real poetic moments, like the one where Srna imagines two musicians from her paper came to life, to elevate it into something more.


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