One of my favorite events within Sarajevo would definitely include the “Bridges of Sarajevo” event. This was a compilation of 13 films directed by European directors and what the city means to each of them. These films were filled with drama, comedy, conspiracies, heart-felt emotion, and strong messages in their short discourses. The interval between the videos were connected by images of a ‘hand-bridge’ that served as a brief pause and presented an additional artistic element to these phenomenal stories. Each portrayal was inundated with impassioned characters, recurrent emotional tugging of the heart and at times poignant in their deliverances.
I was neither entirely prepared to enter into watching successive clips nor the emotional outpouring that was present. The quick progression from one video to another confounded my absorption of the material exhibited. I was not expecting such in-depth thought-provoking imagery or dialogue that was existent in the videos. Personally, I needed an additional few seconds to process and absorb the impact of the concise yet overwhelming amount of the information communicated on the screen.
Ann was able to obtain a seat while Ahmad, Jillian, and I were able to watch the screening with the prior knowledge that we would be sitting on the floor for the duration since the theatre had reached its capacity. I became very uncomfortable sitting on the concrete floor and soon extremely restless; thankfully, a woman saw my agony, tapped me on the shoulder, and offered her vacant seat to me after the man sitting next to her had just left.
Since the film was based on Sarajevo, some of the films were in Bosnian yet others were presented in other languages. Thankfully, the base of the screen was accompanied by subtitle scripts: the top was in Bosnian language and the lower one was in English. This way, it was inviting to all audiences who may have attended (positive or negative, the English language has become the lingua franca of international events.)
I thoroughly enjoyed this event and was thoroughly excited to participate in the world premiere of “Bridges of Sarajevo”, months before it would be presented again along with other respectable films at the end of August once again in Sarajevo at the Film Festival. Thank you Ann for being stubborn in finding this event, despite our “slovenly” appearances in comparison to other participants at this premiere.