Roma search for a better life and acceptance through films

Aug 18, 2015

PHOTO: KUST UN BAREC

Social problems cannot be approached only from a scientific perspective, human problems and suffering, accidents, hopes and wishes are often best told through art, such as literature, music or movies. Impact that art creates can be therapeutic, compassionate and inclusive.

Because of that, the UNDP through the project "Better together for Roma in Croatia" carried out with financial support from the EEA and Norway Grants, supported the third consecutive Kutina Movie Nights that were held from 6 to 9 August 2015. The first evening was devoted exclusively to Roma culture, and two films were features: Roma from Stitar and Kust un barec (I live in Barake).

In the town of Kutina there is a large Roma community with many characteristics caused by different migration flows and settlings of Roma from many countries and cities. Including the movies on Roma topics at the Kutina Movie Nights is one way of promoting inclusion and tolerance.

A documentary „Roma from Stitar“, by the director Šime Dominković is talking about the Roma and their impact on tamburica music in Štitar where they lived 150 years ago, and also about their tragic fate in the NDH regime.

Dario and Nedjeljko, two young unemployed Roma, are the main characters of the award-winning movie “Kust un barec", directed by Željka Kovačević. What unites these two young men is the life in the Roma settlement Barake and their love for music. They are young and critical people who question the world in which they live through the music. Lyrics of their songs are reflection of deep inner sadness and the search for a better life.

Creative activities and projects can help to break stereotypes and initiate the social change. But besides the social level, their impact is significant also on a personal level: acceptance of diversity and development of potential for a better and more inclusive society, perhaps from now on.