Film Review: A SERBIAN FILM (2010)

IMDb: A Serbian Film (2010)
Director: Srdjan Spasojevic
Stars: Srdjan ‘Zika’ Todorovic, Sergej Trifunovic, Jelena Gavrilovic

A Serbian Film gained instant infamy upon its release. I have owned it for a long time without much desire to even watch it. I am also one of those people who has trouble paying attention if I have to read subtitles. A Serbian Film begins a young boy watching a porno. It turns out his father is the star of this film. When the mother walks in and takes the film from the boy, we learn that the father is in what he calls semi-retirement. He was a huge star that is now looking for a way out of the industry. The only problem is that he is running out of money. Placed in a situation where he needs money to take care of his son, he must entertain an offer to star in a new kind of film.

This, of course, is reminiscent of that cop movie or bank robber story-line. You know the one where they have to pull off one last job. Or the one where Danny Glover just keeps saying, “I’m too old for this shit.” Our protagonist in this film isn’t too old, he just wants financial stability for the future of his family. It is this job that promises to pay enough to make this possible.

Aside from the occasional comedic porn scene or sex conversation, this film is full of scenes that foreshadow impending doom. Dark scenery, slow motion shots, and a frightening score all keep telling you that something really bad is about to happen to this guy. There is also the whole plot around his final job. He doesn’t know what he’s filming. No one will tell him what the film is about. They even blindfold him to take him to the filming locations. Even as they shoot the first few opening scenes, the viewer is unaware as to what this film is about.

And then the necrophilia, pedophilia, and other deviant sexual behavior begins. Now there are people out there that consider themselves hardcore. They say A Serbian Film isn’t disturbing because they have become desensitized. I can see that to a certain extent. I have seen numerous films that consider themselves extreme. They are violent, disturbing, and banned all over the world. I do believe, however, that you can call a film disturbing, even if it doesn’t make you throw up or give you recurring nightmares. In fact, no film has done either one of these things to me; but, I consider numerous films disturbing nonetheless. Cannibal Holocaust, Nekromantik 1 and 2, August Underground 1, 2, and 3, Collar, American Guinea Pig, and this crazy ass movie are just a few that I have reviewed for the site.

The disturbing nature from A Serbian Film is almost all completely based on sex. There is gore; but, almost all of gore comes from some sort of sexual act. The gore is well done and the filming of the violence is insanely brutal. This film is loud, graphic, and shot in a suspenseful manner. There are even qualities that you would find in some of the best psychological thrillers. I am actually very surprised by how much I liked this film. It wasn’t just shocking; it was also well made. It looked and sounded great too. It makes me wonder how they got they money to create such an insane piece of work. The filmmakers themselves said this was a response to the film industry in their country. They described the films as being funded by the people, as almost a sort of propaganda. They wanted to create a film that didn’t have a happy ending, one packed with as much depravity as possible. They definitely accomplished that feat with this film. There are multiple scenes that you will remember for the rest of your life. The last 15 minutes alone make this film worth seeing, just so you can tell people you may have seen the sickest film ever made.

I give A Serbian Film a strong 4/5 stars.

This is a must own film if you are a fan of any of the other films mentioned in this review. For those fans, this is a five out of five. However, my rating criteria takes everyone into account. For the regular horror fan it is a must see film, which is why I gave it a four. Click below to buy it.