2005 Posebna POHVALA žirija na 52.Internacionalnom festivalu u Puli za ulogu u filmu SAN ZIMSKE NOĆI
2005 Specijalna nagrada žirija na festivali ALPE ADRIA U TRSTU- za ulogu u filmu SAN ZIMSKE NOĆI
2005 Nagrada za glumu na medjunarodnom filmskom festivalu u Minsku – Belorusija-za ulogu Lazara u filmu »San zimske noći«
2005 ZLATNI VITEZ na festivalu u Čeljabinsku – Rusija - za ulogu u filmu SAN ZIMSKE NOĆI.
2005 Nagrada FIPRESCI – domaćih filmskih kritičara za ulogu Lazara u filmu SAN ZIMSKE NOĆI.
2005 Gran pri NAISA u Nišu za ulogu Lazara u filmu SAN ZIMSKE NOCI
2005 Nagrada FIPRESCI – domacih filmskih kriticara za najbolji film.
2005 Nešvil FF - Gran Pri - Dreammaker Award
2004 San Sebastijan Film Festival- Specijalna nagrada žirija
2004 Tromso Internacionalni Film Festival - FIPRESCI - Nagrada medjunarodne kritike
Goran Paskaljevic's heart-felt "A Midwinter Night's Dream" draws a pessimistic picture of post-war Serbia, caught between the guilty nightmares of recent wars and the rise of ultra-nationalism. Yet, its brooding story of a veteran desperately attempting to connect emotionally with an autistic girl and her refugee mother makes it one of the director's most powerful dramas. Lean, pared-down filming draws viewers in and the threat of imminent violence (not actually on-screen like in "The Powderkeg" aka "Cabaret Balkan""Cabaret Balkan") keeps them. Festival kudos and critical support will be needed to overcome film's tragic bleakness, however, and attract the distribution it deserves.
Using a real autistic girl (Jovana Mitic) in a central role, the film shows great sensitivity in exploring the autism and the uneasiness it causes in "normal""Normal" people. Here autism can be read as a metaphor for Serbia's ills: people's alienation from one another, their inability to grasp the meaning of their actions, their panicky fear of losing their identity. Paskaljevic's anguish is that all attempts to wake up his countrymen seem futile.
Lazar (Lazar Ristovski, who co-produced the film) returns from 10 years in prison a silent, deeply wounded man. He discovers a strange woman, Jasna (Jasna Zalica), and her autistic teenage daughter, Jovana (Mitic), living in his apartment. They are Bosnian Serbs displaced in the war. Acknowledging his rights as owner, Jasna numbly agrees to move into an overcrowded refugee shelter but in a sudden rush of pity, Lazar lets them stay in his house.
As the trio slowly draws closer to each other, their individual dramas are revealed. Jovana's father deserted the family when he realized his daughter was not a normal child. The mother brought her to Serbia in the mistaken hope of a better life.
Lazar's anguish is equally great. In an eerie, very delicate scene, he goes to visit the aged mother of his best friend Milan and asks forgiveness for killing her son. His terrible pain surfaces again in an electrifying confession scene, when he describes to Jasna how he deserted the Serbian army after witnessing his company perform a gruesome atrocity in Bosnia; then he started drinking and killed Milan in a meaningless barroom brawl.
Only after all the ghosts are out of the closet do Lazar and the woman become lovers. His great affection for Jovana helps the girl open up at the special education school she attends. She even takes part in a touching performance of Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream."
She provides a kind of therapy for him, too, by giving him a way to temporarily regress into childlike innocence and come to terms with his feelings of guilt. Just when happiness seems within reach, an act of senseless violence shatters their future. As in "The Powderkeg," the audience is meant to identify the origins of this violence -- which would otherwise be an arbitrary plot twist -- in the war and general political conditions.
Conveying deep feelings in a whisper, Ristovski gives one of his finest perfs, a powerfully understated portrait of the nightmare-ridden veteran who seems to have no greater enemy than himself. In an unusual piece of casting, Zalica -- who is actually a Bosnian Muslim -- suggests a life of suffering and courage with reticence and a worried smile.
The charming, sweet-faced Mitic becomes a credible character thanks to editor Petar Putnikovic's careful selection of footage. As with Gianni Amelio's use of young Andrea Rossi, a real handicapped boy, in "The House Keys," Mitic does not actually perform, yet gives film an enormous boost by her presence. The 35mm blow-up shows off cinematographer Milan Spasic's fine digital camerawork. >From a mud-brown junkyard that resembles a grim scene of post-war destruction to a heavenly cherry orchard, the images carry a strong but subtle symbolism. Zoran Simjanovic's throbbing score shoots through the film with urgency and tension.
Camera (color, DV-to-35m), Milan Spasic; editor, Petar Putnikovic; music, Zoran Simjanovic; production designer, Tijana Maric; costume designer, Jelena Andjelkovic; sound (Dolby Digital), Velibor Hajdukovic, Branko Neskov; associate producers, Philip Zepter, Jose Maria Morales.. Reviewed at San Sebastian Film Festival (competing), Sept. 20, 2004. (Also in Toronto Film Festival -- Masters.) Running time: 95 MIN.
With: Boda Ninković, Erol Kadić, Danica Ristovski, Lav Gersman.
Pritisnut snovima o boljem i pravednijem životu. Izazvan pričama studenata, đaka, radnika, seljak i poštene inteligencije, koji se teško snalaze u vremenima tranzicije, te neprirodne evolucije društva, pa još na srpski način , glavni junak priče Dile, kome je fabrika otišla pod stečaj , odlučuje da uzme stvar u svoje ruke.
Dile drži vatreni revolucionarni govor i poziva ljude na revoluciju.
„Srbija je umorna od loših vesti i nešto mora da se menja. Mi odavno živimo u kapitalizmu, samo narod još nije o tome obavešten. Zato je april vreme kad cemo početi da svodimo račune. Kao što su beli lavovi ugrožene životinjska vrsta, tako smo i mi ugrožena ljudska vrsta.“
Da li je ovo samo san o revoluciji, ili stvarni poziv na revoluciju videćete u tragi-komičnom filmu BELI LAVOVI.
Dile na kraju filma peva RADNIČKI REP u kome su svi odgovori.
Lazar Ristovski i kao glumac i kao reditelj, na zadovoljstvo gledalaca, ponovo pokazuje da je u punoj formi.