Man Is Not a Bird

"Good"

Man Is Not a Bird Review


The first feature by Serbian director Dusan Makavejev, Man Is Not a Birdis a capable satire of the Eastern European work-politic combined with a rather ribald sex comedy.

The plot centers around an engineer named Jan (Janez Vrhovec), who travels to eastern Serbia to help out in a copper factory. When he arrives, he rents a room from the parents of the local, bombshell hairdresser Raika (Milena Dravic), only to wind up in her arms as well. One night, while Jan is accepting an award for his stellar work ethic, Raika hooks up with a smarmy truck driver, angering Jan, her parents, and just about everyone.

While a subplot involving a lecherous factory worker who cheats on his wife doesn't really work with the main plot, Makavejev's White Yugoslavian Trash comedy is successful as an excellent archetype of vintage European filmmaking, filled with longing panoramas of the then-bustling Yugoslavian cities as they tried to join the industrialized world. Expecially during the scenes at a travelling carnival and those involving a visiting hypnotist (from which the title of the film is drawn), the film's poetry is subtle and telling.

Apparently the film was shot at an actual copper plant during production, giving the story a realism few European films of the 1960s can attest to. While the subtitles are far from great and Makavejev clearly had a lot of room to grow as filmmaker, Man Is Not a Bird is undoubtedly deserving of its reputation as "a cornerstone of Eastern European cinema."

Aka If Man Is Not a Bird, Covek Nije Tica.

This bird's gonna fly.



Man Is Not a Bird

Facts and Figures

Run time: 81 mins

In Theaters: Saturday 6th March 1965

Distributed by: Criterion Collection

Production compaines: Avala Film

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 100%
Fresh: 6

IMDB: 7.2 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer:

Starring: as Rajka, as Jan Rudinski, Eva Ras as Barbool's Wife, Stole Aranđelović as Barbulovic 'Barbool', as Bosko, as Zeleznicar, Živojin Pavlović as Neighbor

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