ANJELI PLACU / CRYING
Caligari: 08.04. / 1.30 pm
Homosexuals who make no secret of their sexual orientation meet with considerable difficulties in many post-Communist countries, especially ones where the church is influential. Playwright and director Zuzana Piussi spent more than a year documenting the lives of gay couples in Bratislava, and was allowed to get astonishingly close to her subjects. Her documentary shows the tensions between the individual search for happiness and the norms of society, but also includes the adversities of everyday life. One man is voted out of the competition for the “Slovak Superstar” title; a smugly heterosexual civil servant condescendingly tells one couple why they cannot adopt a child; a Catholic verger has to cope with the conflict between his religion and his sexuality. The yearning for normality we witness throughout the film is conveyed with intimate, yet tactful, intensity. And the question inevitably arises: Is the sanctuary of partnership made stronger or weaker by a potentially hostile environment, does the added strain to which they are exposed make them more stable or more fragile? And so alongside all the scenes of love and affection ANJELI PLACU also shows us the embittered desperation of a lovesick man who wishes he could be heterosexual. All the same: The weeping angel described in a sentimental pub ballad is not typical of the basic tone of Zusa Piussi’s positive and cautiously optimistic film.
Born on 21.10.1971 in Bratislava.
Since 1992, Zuzana Piussi works as stage and costume designer for, amongst others, the Stoka theater in Bratislava. In 1999 she wrote her own theatre show titled “Modna prehliadka“, enlisting the cooperation of L. Burgr and I. Hrubanicova. In 2000 she founded the “Free Association” for contemporary opera, together with L. Burgr. She wrote the libretti for the operas “John King” (2001) and “Tete-a-tete” (2002) and was also responsible for costumes and stage design. Since 2002 she has been studying at the Academy of Music and Performing Arts in Bratislava (VSMU), Faculty of Film and Television. Her documentary VYMET was awarded the Main Prize at the IFF Beirut in 2003.