Something troubling is happening in the film world in Albania. Some weeks ago, the country’s Institute for Communist Crimes proposed that films from the country’s communist era (1946-1991) should be banned from television. They argued that screening movies made during these 45 years would encourage nostalgia for the old Enver Hoxha regime which was, of course, an oppressive dictatorship in many ways. Its labor camps and prisons were places of terror. Many were murdered because of their political dissent or non-conformism. But banning the estimated 200 films made by the Albanian Film Institute from 1945 and then the Kinostudio from 1952 would be a counter-productive way to deal with the wounds of the past.
Although conflict in the Balkans has been out of the headlines for several years, Danis Tanović’s No Man’s Land (2001) stands out among other recent war movies for its strong indictment of the intertwined nature of war, global power, and media.