Tuškanac Cinema: Film Programmes of the Croatian Film Clubs’ Association

A decade of dedication to film (2004 - 2014)

The ceremony that marked the beginning of regular screenings of Film Programmes of the Croatian Film Clubs’ Association in the Tuškanac cinema was held on March 16, 2004. It was emphasized at the ceremony that the Programmes are primarily designed for students, future filmmakers and everyone who wishes to learn more about film. Tuškanac cinema was to be managed by the Croatian Film Clubs’ Association and Zagreb Film, the Film Programmes were designed and implemented by the Croatian Film Clubs’ Association and the Croatian Cinematheque. In the past ten years valuable cooperation has been established with numerous embassies, whose help is essential in organization of retrospectives of famous authors from around the world.

All this was preceded by three years of screenings in the Film Centre (whose had been foundation in progress), which was officially opened on October 16, 2001 in the Zagreb Cinemtheque in Kordunska Street. The project was designed in 1998 by Ladislav Galeta, Vjekoslav Majcen, Mato Kukuljica and Hrvoje Turković and envisioned as a place that would unite screening activities, lecturing, workshops, lending, and distribution, publishing-promotional and exhibiting activities related to the film culture. The plan was to screen the programs all around Croatia, not only in Zagreb. The concept design was accepted by the Academy of Drama Art, Academy of Fine Arts, Academy of Music, Faculty of Architecture, School of Design, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Croatian Film Archive (Croatian Cinematheque) and the Croatian State Archives, Croatian Film Clubs’ Association, Croatian Association of Film Critics and the Croatian Film Directors' Guild. The president of the Film Centre's Council was Hrvoje Hribar, official headquarters were in Savska 25, in the Student Centre of the University of Zagreb (for a while permanent space was to be provided on that location, and the programs’ director was Agar Pata.

The first eight screenings, from mid-October till mid-December, included a number of valuable films, from Lars von Trier’s The Idiots, retrospective of Robert Bresson’s films, celebration program at the occasion of the 101 years of French cinema, Kryzstof Zanussi and Fritz Lang’s retrospectives, as well as a program of domestic films for children and youth by Obrad Gluščević, Mate Relja, Krešo Golik and Vladimir Tadej, Borivoj Dovniković’s retrospective and documentaries by Krsto Papić, i.e. selection of films from the production of the School for Animated Film (ŠAF).

In the following year there was a significant increase in the number of screenings – a total of seventy. Thus, from January 22 till December 17, there were more than 11 300 viewers of films bVy adim, Clair, Stiller, Zaluski, Ferreri, Schlöndorf, Herzog, Wenders, Carné, Clouzot, Margarethe von Trott, Cocteau, Tati, Attenborough, Crichton, Bergman, Avati and Branko Bauer, Veljko Bulajić, France Štiglic, Nikola Tanhofer and Branko Marjanović. Especially popular were the films by Rainer Werner Fassbinder whose films had had sometimes more than three hundred viewers. Also screened was a series of animated films under the common title Towards the animation festival as well as a program of short Austrian film.

In the first six months of 2003, there were 39 screenings of films by Babaja, Wenders, Lean, de Sica, Murnau, Mimica, Szabo, Antonioni, Hadžić, Kubrick, Dmytryk, Preminger, Huston, Aldrich, Welles and Haneke. Also at that time started the cooperation with the Goethe Institute, British Council, Macedonian National Film Archive, Yugoslav Film Archive from Belgrade, Jadran Film, Croatia Film, Europa Film, MG Film, distributers Blitz Film & Video Distribution and Discovery Film & Video Distribution, Italian Cultural Institute, the Austrian Cultural Forum, Croatian Radiotelevision, Embassy of the Kingdom of Sweden and the Embassy of the Republic of Bulgaria, and most importantly Croatian State Archives and the Croatian Film Archive.

From the Film Centre to Film Programmes

In 2004, after the Croatian Film Clubs’ Association, led by its President Hrvoje Turković and SecretaryVera Robić Škarica, took over the Tuškanac cinema, previously known as cinema Sloboda (Freedom), the long-ago-envisioned preconditions for the realization of the entire content of the Film Centre, now renamed Film Programmes of the Croatian Film Clubs’ Association, were finally achieved. The small and large film theatre halls and other premises in Tuškanac enable screenings, lectures and workshops, while implementation of other programs is also in progress. From the very beginning, the programs have been financially supported by the City Office for Culture of the City of Zagreb, Zagreb County and the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Croatia, with the General sponsor HTnet, the cultural portal.

On the first day of the regular screenings Fedor Škubonja’s film The Lost Pencil and Živorad Tomić’s film Degree for Death were screened. In addition, the screenings included the selection of the first films made in our country, from Šibenska luka from 1914 to Prehrana from 1930. The highlight of the opening program was the screening of the film Ecstasy starring Hedy Lamarr and Zvonimir Rogoz.

Programs continued in March and April with retrospectives of films by Nikola Tanhofer and Mike Leigh, distributers’ retrospective (held on Saturdays; repeated in 2005) and films by Alfred Hitchcock. This was followed by Miklós Jancso’s retrospective, program of new French cinema, films by Branko Marjanović and a series of films by Luchino Visconti (screened in April 2004 as well as in October 2006, marking the 100th anniversary of his birth). May and June were reserved for István Szabo’s retrospective and a program of Italian films (contemporary Italian cinema was also presented with a retrospective in 2005 and then with reviews which has become a tradition from 2006 until now), programs of Croatian films for children and Croatian trash film, retrospective of producer Marin Karmitz’s works and the program Music and Film. Autumn began with programs devoted to directors of the Prague School, retrospective of Hungarian films (also held in 2005, 2006, 2008 and 2011), screening of all fourteen episodes of TV series Berlin Aleksanderplatz, which was screened again in the second half of 2012 with the addition of discussions held by the film critics Bruno Kragić and Živorad Tomić. Then came the program devoted to films starring the famous actress Ingrid Bergman, retrospective entitled The 1950s on Film (continued in 2005) and program of Polish film (also held in 2006 and 2008). A premiere of Dan Oki's films took place as well as of the film Ljubav nije slijepa by Višnja Biti and Milivoj Bolanča. Also, some screenings from the One Take Film Festival (also in 2005, 2006, 2008, 2010 and 2012) and the Human Rights Film Festival also took place in Tuškanac. A retrospective of Spanish films started in November (since then held from 2005 until 2011 and in 2013), and the Day of the Croatian Film Clubs’ Association was celebrated on December 18 with screenings of awarded films from the One-minute Film Festival in Požega, films by children and youth and the films from the annual Croatian Film Clubs’ Association production.

The following year, 2005, was marked by the Godard program Histoire(s) du cinéma and the retrospective of the Russian cinematheque films, screenings from the Queer festival on Fridays and Saturdays (continuing in 2006 and 2007). The international festival of documentary film Zagreb Dox was also held in Tuškanac in the end of February (also in 2006). The program also included Stanislav Barabáš and Ken Loach’s retrospectives, followed by the Iranian film week (held every year from 2006 until 2014) and the retrospective of German silent film, retrospective of modern Japanese film (held from 2007 until 2011) and the program of classical Japanese film (also held in 2006, 2012 and 2013). In the end of May, Day of the City of Zagreb was celebrated with special screenings, and in June retrospective of Jean-Luc Godard’s films took place.

The School for Animated Film in Čakovec presented itself at the very end of June. A retrospective of Belgian film was screened in September (and in 2010), twenty five years of the Croatian Film Archive was marked in October (and continued at the beginning of 2006), and films from the 17th world animated film festival - feature animated films were screened at the end of the month. November was dedicated to Eli Petri films, to the Japanese director Takahaka Timura and the tenth anniversary of Adria Art Artist, and also premiered the Damir Čučić film Rocking Chair. A retrospective of Chinese film was screened (and in 2009), and in December there were screenings of Krzysztof Kieślowski films (and in 2006) and the author's night of Borivoj Dovniković. The year ended with a retrospective of films containing the music of Alfi Kabiljo, films from the collection of the Croatian Film Clubs’ Association and the premier of the film Promised Land by Natalija Župan.

The beginning of 2006 was marked by retrospectives The films we loved with big cinematographic titles, a retrospective of German avant-garde cinematography and of modern Finnish cinematography were screened in March, and Bernard Bertolucci's films in April. May brought restored short films by Miroslav Mikuljan and the retrospective of the Portuguese contemporary film, followed by retrospectives of Petar Krelja and François Truffaut, then Paolo Sorrentini and at the beginning of July and September the great names of world cinematography (and in 2007) from the collection of the Croatian Film Archive. In October, there was a screening of the Claude Chabrol retrospective and the retrospective of Indian film (also in 2009, 2011 and 2013), at the beginning of November and December films by Author's studio – photography, film, video were presented, followed by retrospectives of Louise Brooks and Vittorio Gassman, i.e. the fiction in Spanish film, ending the year with a Lordan Zafranović retrospective.

Profiling the retrospectives and new programmes

2007 started with a retrospective of French film during the occupation, followed by a retrospective of Joseph Losey and a premier of Sabina Varjača's film Back to Bosnia. A retrospective of Luis Buñuel was screened, and a programme called Experimental Tuesday was introduced (still lasting to this day under the name Short Tuesday). There were screenings of films from the latest production of the Croatian Film Clubs’ Association and a retrospective of the Croatian genre cinematography of the 1980s, a retrospective of Béle Tarra and Aki Kaurismäki films, of awarded films from the Croatian Film Days and the documentary by Gjorče Stavrevski At home was premiered. A retrospective of the Czechoslovakian cinematography from the 1960s was screened in May, and the beginning of June saw screenings of animated films from Baden-Wuerttemberg on the occasion of the Second (and then Third and Fourth) Mediterranean Games held in Rijeka and Zagreb, the selection of films by Mediterranean authors (both in 2008 and 2009) and the retrospective of Egyptian films, the London Zagreb Jewish Film Festival and the retrospective of Jusuf Chahine. The season ended with Film Mutations: the Festival of Invisible Cinema.

In memoriam of Ante Peterlić was held on September 20, by screening the John Ford film The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, of Josip Štajner on September 22 by screening the film Rio Bravo by Howard Hawks, and of Zoran Tadić on October 14 by screening the Carol Reed film The Third Man. Also screened were the retrospectives of Robert Bresson and Ingmar Bergman, films from the DokuART festival in Bjelovar (also in 2009 until 2013), the exhibition and screenings by the Fashion Designers' Association and films from the Zagreb Film Festival (also in 2009, 2012 and 2013), author's nights of Momir Matović and Ljubiša Grlić, a celebration of the Day of Croatian Animation (as well as the international, from 2009 systematically celebrated every year), screenings of Spanish comedies, the 39th Review of Croatian Film and Video, the retrospective of German cinematography and forty years of German video art, the retrospective of Film Author Studio (also in 2011), the presentation of the festival More in Rijeka, the club championship of AS (also in 2008 and 2011), and the end of the year was marked by the Costa-Gavras retrospective and the Branko Lentić retrospective.

The following 2008 was marked by retrospectives of Michelangelo Antonioni, Federico Fellini and Aleksandr Dovženko, premiers of the films Chak de! India directed by Shimit Amin and Kenedi is getting married by Želimir Žilnik, the Days of Montenegrin Films (also from 2010 until 2012) and the retrospective of films from Francophone countries (Days of Francophone Films from 2010 until 2014), and films of Dovženko and Julija Solnceva. The retrospective of contemporary Brazilian film was also screened (also in 2009 until 2013) and films of Mike Kaurismaki, several films about Picasso, several Fade-in documentary Fridays and a Jacques Demy retrospective, and in May a Krsto Papić retrospective. In early June, several films were screened in memoriam of Zvonimir Črnko and a programme Međimurje in Zagreb, and the project Bloomsday by Ivan Ladislav Galeta was held on June 16.

In September the programme started with a premier of the film Across the Border by Petar Krelja, and continued with in memoriam of Richard Widmark, Jules Dassin, Charlton Heston, Dino Risi, Roy Scheider, Fedor Škubonja, Sydney Pollack, Boris Dvornik and Semka Sokolović Bertok, an Anne Magnani retrospective and French cinematography of the sixties, while at the end of October there was a commemoration of the World Day for Audiovisual Heritage (also in 2009 until 2013) and the International Animation Day (also in 2009 until 2013). The retrospective of Ibero-American cinematography was held in November (also in 2009 until 2013), club days marking 80 years of Kinoklub Zagreb and the 40th review of Croatian film and video production and 60 seconds of Croatian film (also in 2009 until 2013), as well as screenings from the collection or production of the Croatian Film Clubs’ Association (in 2010 and in 2012).

The first screening in 2009 showed the Nicole Hewitt film In Time, followed by a retrospective of German expressionism, in memoriam screenings of Paul Newman, Sonja Savić and Tomislav Pinter, and then the Rainer Werner Fassbinder retrospective. After that came the films of Andrzej Wajda and Jean Renoir, a premier of the Nikola Čurčina film The Olive Girls and all three parts of the Mladen Juran film The Living Photographs, followed by a series of screenings in memoriam of Mate Kukuljica. French night was held in Tuškanac cinema in May, followed by the Eric Rohmer retrospective, and in June in memoriam of Robert Mulligan, Elia Kazan and Joseph Mankiewicz and the retrospective of the new Croatian film of the nineties. In the autumn there were premiers of films The Birds by Petar Krelja and Invisible Galleries by Željko Kipke, followed by a retrospective of Italian neorealism, in memoriam of Marcello Mastroianni, a Fritz Lang retrospective, French films with a taste of the Mediterranean and a retrospective of films produced by.

At the beginning of 2010 the audience could see films by Jacques Tati and Pedro Almodóvar, as well as screenings of films produced by Blank studio. They were followed by the retrospective of Swedish cinematography (also in 2013), screenings in memoriam of James Mason, the Days of Macedonian Cinematheque, in memoriam of Eric Rohmer, Zvonimir Berković and Ante Babaja, and then the retrospective of Polish cinematography at the anniversary of the birth of Fryderyk Chopin. The Subversive Film Festival was held in May (also in 2011 and 2012) followed by the Jacques Rivette retrospective, and in June the programmes of the International Animation Festival (also in 2011 until 2013), the Gérard Philipe retrospective and Almodovar's footnotes. The film Psycho by Alfred Hitchcock was also screened, marking the fiftieth anniversary of the premier. In October followed a series of screenings in memoriam of Tomislav Gotovac, Zagreb Film Festival (also in 2011) and the contemporary Israeli film retrospective, a new programme was launched called Short Tuesday (also in 2011 until 2013), and the retrospective of new Malaysian film was held at the end of November, as well as the Croatian Film Archive Weekend (also in 2011 until 2013), in memoriam of Bekim Fehmi, and in December the Days of FACTUM, in memoriam of Obrad Gluščević, Karl Malden, Patrick Swayze, Clark Gable, Denis Hopper and Božidar Orešković. The year ended with a programme titled pre-Christmas surprise selection by Mima Simić (also in 2011), Casablanca was screened.

From horror to animation

Screenings in 2011 started off with a horror retrospective, in memoriam of Tony Curtis, Arthur Penn, Jill Clayburgh, Mario Monicelli, Leslie Nielsen, Blake Edwards, a theme film day following the exhibition having a theme of mothers and daughters and the weekend of Croatian film by the Croatian Film Clubs’ Association and the Croatian Film Archive. 150 years of the unification of Italy was commemorated by a film evening, and in April in memoriam of Claude Chabrol and the premier of the film Am I happy or what? by Vanja Sviličić. The first part of the season ended with the in memoriam programme of Fadil Hadžić, a programme of the Music Biennale Zagreb, in memoriam of Annie Girardot, Marie Schneider, Sussanah York and Peter Yates, the Subversive Film Festival, author's night of Mladen Juran, a retrospective of Sandrine Bonnaire films, commemorating 100 years of birth of Nino Rota, 10 years of Portuguese short film and in memoriam of Dino De Laurentiis. A retrospective of contemporary Korean film (also in 2012 and in 2013) was screened in September, in October the programme Film and live music, nine (then ten and eleven) years of the Croatian issue of Elle: fashion and film (also in 2012 and in 2013), a retrospective of contemporary Indonesian film, and by the end of the year in memoriam of Elizabeth Taylor and the Wim Wenders retrospective.

The following 2012 started with in memoriam screening of Ivica Vidović, Vida Jerman, Mia Oremović, Rade Marković, Oliver Marković, Georges Franju and Ken Russell, a review of films from Oberhausen, in memoriam of Ivo Škrabalo, Michelangelo Antonioni and Kaneto Shindõ, a retrospective of Egyptian films and Pouran Derakhshandeh, retrospectives of Amos Gitai and films based on the works of Dickens, followed by the programme Cinema against corruption, a Miloš Radivojević retrospective, a VAFI winning films programme, a retrospective of Istvan Szabo films, in memoriam of Zlatko Crnković, Noir Festival (also in 2013) and a retrospective of Seijun Suzuki, retrospectives of Japanese animated film (also in 2013) and German westerns, followed by an Olivier Assayas retrospective, conversations in Tuškanac cinema on the work of Rainer Werner Fassbinder Berlin Alexanderplatz, a retrospective selected by the Croatian-American Society (also in 2013), a special programme of the Croatian Association of Technical Culture (also in 2013) and the Alain Resnais retrospective.

Programmes in 2013 were also marked with in memoriam screenings for the ones who are no longer with us, from Tony Scott, Sylvie Kristel, Theodoros Angelopulos to Hedy Lamarr, František Čap, René Clément, Burt Lancaster and Vivien Leigh. The first Short Tuesday was dedicated to the memory of Breda Beban, there were also screenings of films from the Media Acquisitions archives, the best from Oberhausen 2012 and a Philippe Garrel retrospective. 100 years of Indian cinematography was commemorated in April and May, there was a Krzysztof Zanussi retrospective, the Days of African Culture and the programme ZAG in Tuškanac. A selection of European films from Media Acquisitions was screened and the programme Towards Europe: European film successes, the Tabor Film Festival in Tuškanac and the Alpbach Club in Tuškanac cinema. There were also the Days of Macedonian Film, the premier of the film Foreclosure by Neven Hitrec, the evening of Nenad Dizdarević, a retrospective A woman in a city, a city on film, the Days of Slovenian Film, Short Tuesday with author's evening of Danijel Šuljić and Ivica Matić films, the Day of Lux film, Film Mutations: the Seventh Festival of Invisible Cinema, the Claire Denis retrospective and the programme the shortest day for short film.

During the tenth year of Film Programmes of the Croatian Film Clubs’ Association in Tuškanac cinema there was a screening of the travelogue programme on Bhutan and Nepal, in memoriam of Giluiano Gemma, Cole Porter, Bigas Luna and Ružica Sokić and the programme Third man visiting the Third woman, a retrospective or Iranian films, Francophone films...

Programme booklet

The Film Centre regularly published programme booklets (seven have been published) which in addition to basic information on the films, actors' and directors' biographies and filmographies also contained valuable comments from critics on individual authors and their works. The Film Programmes were also continued to be published (28 booklets on the basic programme and a series of special issues for individual author's or national retrospectives and other special events were published), and it is also worth mentioning that the programme booklets also contained texts written (or published) by Fernando Alonso, Vladimir Lj. Angelov, Victor Hugo, Portillo Angulo, Olivier Assayas, Luiz Fernando G. de Athayde, Gideon Bachman, Luis Barreiros, Ingmar Bergman, Luis García Berlanga, Rob Blackwelder, Etami Borjan, Tomislav Brlek, Luis Buñuel, Charlotte Chandler, Chandrahas Choudhury, Ian Christie, Paola Ciccolella, Michel Ciment, Artur Ciwilko, Michael Coles, Mikael Colville-Andersen, Jonathan Scott, Emanuela D'Alessandro, Sanja Domazet, Bekim Fehmiu, Uliks Fehmiu, Federico Fellini, Mike Figgis, Haroldo Teixeira Valladão Filho, Jasna Galjer, Françoise Gilot & Carlton Lake, Michael Gould and Lloyd Chesley, Mimi Gjorgoska-Ilievska, Radovan Grahovac, Josip Grozdanić, Dan Harper, Kruno Heidler, Mark Holcomb, Hrvoje Hribar, Branko Ištvančić, Mira Kermek, Krzysztof Kieślowski, Bruno Kragić, Petar Krelja, Juraj Kukoč, Mato Kukuljica, Tomislav Kurelec, Fritz Lang, Sonja Leboš, Carmen Lhotka, Alemka Lisinski, Camillo de Marco, Edward Marriott, Dario Marković, Mladen Martić, Premendra Mazumder, Matt Mazur, Brian McFarlane, Krešimir Mikić, Paolo Minuto, Ranko Munitić, Diana Nenadić, Kim Newman, Božidar Novak, Marie Nyreröd, R. Barton Palmer, Krsto Papić, Nenad Pata, Irena Paulus, Jurica Pavičić, Ante Peterlić, Ilindenka Petruševa, Annika Pham, Virginia Piombo, Nenad Polimac, Miuccia Prada, Alessandro Radovini, Daniel Rafaelić, Dragan Rubeša, Andrew Saris, Luda & Jean Schnitzer, Maria Sica, Vittorio de Sica, Mima Simić, Alex Simon, John Simon, Danusja Stok, Tomislav Šakić, Rada Šešić, Ivo Škrabalo, Elizabeth Taylor, Rustin Thompson, Peter Tonguette, Vladimir Tomić, François Truffaut, Hrvoje Turković, Maya Turovskaya, Boris Vidović, Luchino Visconti, Tanja Vrvilo, Andrzej Wajda, Fiona Watson, Pero Zlatar, Lucija Zore, Živorad Tomić and others, in a wide range from film authors, theorists and critics to employees from the field of culture, journalists and diplomats. Contributors on the production of programme booklets were Tihomir Hamilton, Jasna Perić and Viktoria Krčelić, and the editor was Agar Pata.

Duško Popović