“To the Hilt”, the latest film of acclaimed Macedonian director Stole Popov, premieres tonight in Skopje, at 8.30pm at cinema Millennium.
The story is a complex quadrangle between an uncompromising idealist rebel, a merciless Turkish officer, an opportunist rich man’s son returning home after his studies in Europe, and a lucid and open-minded European woman, who flirts with the three men and sets in train a series of events with dire and unforeseeable consequences. The characters go through turbulent collisions resulting in cathartic experiences and new self-awareness. The film is a harsh and romantic story in which the eternal Macedonian quest for identity and independence is viewed through the prism of the relative notions of freedom, justice, love, sacrifice and treason. The story dramatizes and parodies the myth and anti-myth of West and East, of Europe and the Balkans. It brings to boiling-point the paradoxes and absurdities of Macedonian history. Caught in a trap, one of the characters declares his radical philosophy: “Fuck life if you aren’t ready to die for it!” If the traditional American genre is the Western, a story of the Wild West, this film is its eastern counterpart – an Eastern, a story of the Wild East.
The film is co-written by Goran Stefanovski and Stole Popov, with cinematography by Apostol Trpevski, music by Duke Bojadziev, scenography by Milenko Jeremic, costimography by Emilija Ivanovska and starring Inti Sraj, Martin Jordanovski, Sashko Kocev, Toni Mihajlovski, Miki Manojlovic, Iskra Veterova, Nikola Kojo, Senko Velinov, Nikola Ristanovski.
“To the Hilt” is a co-production between Triangle Film, Sektor Film, FX3X and the Macedonian Radio Television, and is also supported by the Government of Republic of Macedonia, the Ministry of Culture and the Macedonian Film Agency.