Nemanja Vojinović 1h 22min

Original title : Bottlemen

Directed by : Nemanja Vojinović

Bottlemen (2023) is a documentary by Nemanja Vojinović, selected in the “Competition Prix PRESENT” section of the 19th edition of the Paris European Film Festival, Europe by Europe.

Synopsis :

On the outskirts of Belgrade, the Serbian capital, lies one of Europe’s largest landfills: Vinča. Once an archaeological site from the European Neolithic era, this fire-ravaged place is the workplace of a community of plastic bottle collectors – the Bottlemen. We follow the final days of this community before their jobs become obsolete, while a simple-hearted boxer, Yanika, struggles to become the leader of this group in a whimsically hierarchical system.



“The first thing I knew about Vinča was its historical and cultural significance. What once was a cradle of European civilization, now presents a mirror of contemporary lifestyle shaped by overconsumption. At first, I thought this would be the topic of my film. But my first visit to the landfill was mind-blowing.
The irony in the bottle collecting business is that the “bottlemen”, who are doing a hard and dirty job can earn more than double the average Serbian salary and this is their incentive to stay and continue working on the landfill. The approach is observational, depicting scenes from real life and events without the use of interviews. By using lenses that range from wide to mid length, I intend to put the viewer in an intimate position, right in front of the subject. On the other hand, with telephoto lenses the characters are “glued” with the surrounding, being a layer in the landfill landscape. Besides strong visual compositions, the key role is the sound – sometimes realistic, sometimes subjective and very ominous.”

Nemanja Vojinović, Film Freeway.

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