BESA

  • Original title: Besa
  • Type: feature film
  • Year: 2009
  • Genre: Drama, Romance
  • Country: Serbia, Slovenia, France, Hungary, Croatia
  • Language: Serbian, Albanian, Slovenian, German
  • Length: 106 min
  • Directed by: Srđan Karanović
At the very beginning of the World War I, Filip, a Serb and the principal of a gymnasium in a small Serbian town, is summoned urgently to Belgrade to serve in the war effort. He has no one to leave his wife Lea with. She is a young and pretty Slovenian woman, a teacher of rhythmics and dance he met while studying in Western Europe. Azem, an illiterate, patriarchal Albanian, the school custodian, gives Filip his solemn oath, his 'Besa' (in the Albanian tradition: when someone gives their word which must be kept even if they lose their life in the process) that he would look after Lea and see to it that nothing happened to her. Two Europeans, from two entirely different cultures and habits are forced to an awkward cohabitation in the empty school. While the war rages in the background and gets menacingly closer, their interaction develops from hatred, through intolerance, to tolerance and an unusual friendship. Circumstances gradually draw Lea and Azem, a Christian woman and a Muslim ...
  • Screenplay: Srđan Karanović
  • Cinematography: Slobodan Tninić
  • Production design: Goran Joksimovic
  • Music by: Zoran Simjanovic
  • Edited by: Branka Ceperac, Mateja Rackov
  • Costume designer: Saša Kuljača
  • Make-up artist: Martina Subic-Dodocic
  • Cast: Predrag Manojlović, Iva Krajnc, Radivoje Bukvić, Nebojša Dugalić, Ana Kostovska
  • Production company: Film House Baš Čelik, Vertigo/Emotionfilm, Asap Films, Tivoli Film Produkcio, Arkadena Zagreb
  • Producers: Cédomir Kolar, Jelena Mitrovic, Dénes Szekeres, Srdan Golubovic, Danijel Hocevar
  • Co-production: Vision Team
  • Co-producers: Dragan Djurkovic, Slobodan Trninic