Left all things to my partner and went out with some Dutch guys to drive around the whole country BiH. It is Autumn. The country is even better as ever before, as far as I have seen.
We were on tour to make a film about the ecological situation in a post war society. So we went to the forrest and the villages. People didn't want to speak about what is going on, they had fear for whatever could be there to be afraid of. And I respect that. I'm sorry with them as far that is nessesary.
But where to start when you want to make a film about a subject like this. The Dutch guys were not journalists, more artists. But they came with a journalistic task so they also forgot the fact they ARE artists and so we found our first struggle. Many people didn't want to talk with us because they could loose their job. Not only in the forrest and villages. In Sarajevo the same thing happened when we started to speak with internationals. (some statements of internationals showing their concern about BiH; 'Bosnia is like a drunk man' or 'the international community is not a kangeroo'. To one we said at the and of the interview; 'thank you, good luck with your carreer'. She said; 'Yes, I hope'.)
In Banja Luka we spoke with a spokesman of the ministry that is supposed to protect the forrests but he was also more protecting his vonarable situation. Not mentioning Republika Srpska gave wood to volunteers in the war (like de fedaration gave ' import tax free' car to their volunteers).
There were some ecologists who spoke openly, but their face shows that they are concidered as hippies inside their own community, and what so ever, they have hardly no influence in the future of reality.
But who was there who could give a statement about the absurness that all BiH authorities and all international authorities supporting only a short term development, selling all ground sources for money, while not much is produced with those materials. All products that are so popular in a kapitalistic society must be bought abroad. Who could say something about this to our camera?
Finnaly we wanted to film a tree been cut down. Just pure sensation. We saw 1000 trucks full of trees, hundreds of companies cutting it into planks, horses transporting the cutted trees on tiny paths through the forrest, but no tree fell down.
The sound of a chainsaw made our Dutch geusts so horney that they jumped out of the car and with camera and microphone attacked the woodcutter as if he was a slaughterer in Omarska, still doing his job.
We were in Omarska, in Kozarac, in Maglaj, Glaveticevo. We were in the cells, the isolated cells, in the braincells of a damaged mind. And our Dutch guests did not always realize what harm they did asking complete naive questions.
So we gave them lessons in eco and logical situations in a post war society, and we made them feel real good. Their western pantzer skin had to be penetrated. We couldn't send them home with a film which was not journalistic, which was not related with the soul of BiH, which would be only a reflextion of a Dutch mind in BiH. It should be a film that at least could be shown in BiH itself. Luckily the guys were smart enough to realize our bombardment of semi philosofical slogans (read: semi reality in the same time) and finally opened up. We saw reconstruction workers offering us beer, slivo and a complete pig, The police man didn't care I got drunk while I had to drive because I got drunk with Slivo from the right entity. We were on top of Sisa, which was completely marvelous, we were in Zelenkovac, an ecological village near Podrasnica and Mrkonic Grad.
And the colors were so good I got stoned just by that.
The film is supposed to be finished around newyear and there are reasonable options to broadcast it also in BiH. We'll keep you informed because we think it is an absolute good statement somewhere inbetween straight crime, Bosnian soul, nowadays reality, international absurdity en personal dignity.

Makers: Bart Lodewijks en Gerard Hulsenbeck
Translation and inspiration : Srdjan Sjaljic
Driver and management: Martin S. Past

Picture of this film will be added as soon as they are transferred from camera to dict, to email message, to photo, through the server so you will get it straight in your livingroom to admire.