Snow by Aida Begiá

Cannes Film Fest 2008–Aida Begi's “Snow” world premiered at the 2008 Cannes Film Fest in the Critics Week sidebar.

Snow does not fall to cover the hill, but for every beast to leave its trail.

Bosnia, 1997: Four women, two old ladies, four girls, an old man and a boy live in the war-torn village of Slavno. Their families have been killed and their bodies never found. Living with the presence of their missing loved ones, the women have created a very special world, one in which the absent are nevertheless present. Trying to keep themselves alive by keeping all memories and their dreams, they have made a dreamland out of their village without even being aware of it.

Slavno is remote from the rest of the world, but the first snow brings the threat of total isolation. As it gets closer, Alma, a stubborn young woman in her late twenties, believes they can not only survive but even prosper by selling plum jam and other fruit and vegetable products on a deserted road. Two businessmen unexpectedly visit Slavno demanding the residents to leave the village offering money in return. The villagers face a dilemma: should they accept the offer that could save their lives but destroy their souls A sudden storm traps the businessmen in Slavno, forcing them to face a problem bigger than anything they expectedthe truth!

Directors Note

War is one of the most essential situations one can experience because of the constant closeness of death. If death follows you in peacetime, then peace continues to be as essential as the war was. Peacetime is sometimes more complicated than the war. Materialism takes its role very fast and all the essential things youve learned during the war you start to forget.

People run after their place on earth, to discover that the Earth has not stopped turning in the meantime. Still, the past cannot be forgotten and the future cannot clear the past. Living in illusion will not help anyone but a ticket to a United Europe because the tumor of the lie will spread and eat everything that lives.

This relationship between life and earth, war and peace, past and future creates a lot of absurdities in the lives of people in my country. It creates a lot of questions but gives no answers. Pain and joy, love and hate, east and west are all happening and clashing at the same time. All this makes my country and people very special, but it is not always easy to fins a way out of postwar confusion and injustice. It is not easy to have dreams and believe they can come true.

The inhabitants of Slavno find the strength to resist and to dream their own dreams, even if sometimes they are nightmares. Freedom is a possibility to choice and they will fight for it! If you imagine a completely devastated village filled with beautiful flowers, large fruit and clean water, then you will understand the essence of a poetry which shows that construction is far more powerful than destruction.

Today, in 2008, it may sound overly romantic to insist that the struggle for truth and freedom is worthwhile. But maybe we just need to be reminded. If art is not there to remind us, then what is