Pretty Village, Pretty Flame review

Based on a very real incident which occurred in Bosnia in 1992, Srdjan Dragojevic's Pretty Village, Pretty Flame is one of the most electrifying anti-war movies ever made. A gravely wounded Serbian soldier lies in a Belgrade hospital and remembers how his platoon was trapped in a tunnel by their Muslim enemies. Low-budget, the film is nevertheless realistically acted, tightly edited and packed with startling imagesand edgy, absurdist humour. What this small, worthy film excels at is showing how even long friendships became perverted in the Bosnian conflict, although it never dehumanises, or indeed, demonises, the rank-and-file Serbian combatants. Dedicated to the "film industry of a country that no longer exists", Pretty Village, Pretty Flame's powerful intensity and subtle complexity combine to make a movie that surpasses even the acclaimed Welcome To Sarajevo in terms of its realistic, historically correct storytelling. Small it may be, but it's powerfully and perfectly formed.

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