Positive reactions about the film “When the day had no name” after Berlin Film Festival



After the successful presentation of the Macedonian film “When the day had no name” at the Berlin Film Festival, the positive reactions, reviews and invitations from festivals are evident. “When the day had no name” had a great reception from the audience and also by critics, who recognized it as one of the most interesting projects at this year's Berlin festival.

Prestigious portal specialized in European films Cineuropa came out with a very positive review, introducing the film as “Teona Strugar Mitevska's most accomplished and rewarding film to date, with whom Mitevska has taken a new, bold step forward”. The film is also described as: “…very specific look at the current state of Macedonian society, Balkan macho culture, and the consequences they have on the younger generations. Inspired by a real event, but telling the story from an opposite angle, it is a tough, but in the end more than rewarding, film to see. Mitevska arrives at her message from different places, fortifying it through sometimes sophisticated, and sometimes blunt, means, but cinematically, When the Day Had No Name is a tightly directed film with a rough and strong visual style, and powerful sound design that takes over the task of storytelling in well-chosen places, especially when Jean Paul Dessy's disturbing, tension-creating music kicks in. The casting of boys with little or no acting experience lends the film aspects that perhaps even the director did not expect. Their individual characteristics spring out of the film like weeds, unexpectedly adding to the disturbing (more frequently) and optimistic (quite rarely) sides of the personalities that they represent”.

The referent Screen Daily described the film as a film with “bleak subject matter, captured with an unflinching lens by Agnes Godard, makes this a tough prospect, even within the Balkan region. This is a picture which will play best to sophisticated festival audiences which may appreciate the director’s naturalistic approach and the unvarnished honesty of her portrait of Macedonian teens”.

Jurisa Pavicic for the Croatian Jutarnji List wrote, “Macedonian film is playing between fact and fiction, on the way which probably will rise objections, the film is dark, but in the same time very interesting study of male adolescence in the transition countries”. 

Bosnian newspaper Oslobođenje, is saying that “the story for this film visually quite expressive is talking about a lost generation of young people, which is not characteristic only for Macedonia but also for the Balkans. The film When the day had no name haven’t form of thriller, although at times possesses elements of that genre, which are skillfully presented through the tense atmosphere of anticipation of something unknown, with the catastrophic music and sound base”.

The film from Berlin began with its festival life, continuing with the Sofia Film Festival, where it will be shown on 17 March in competitive program focused on the Balkan film. In April the film will be part of two more festivals in the main competition, first one, the Festival of European Film in Lecce, Italy, where Labina Mitevska was awarded for the lead female role in the film “I’m from Titov Veles” and then at the Film Festival in Linz, Austria, where ten years ago Teona Mitevska won the prize for best director, for her first film “How I killed a Saint”. 

The initial success of the film promises a rich and fruitful festival tour and we hope that it will continue to attract attention, to cause debates and to represent the Macedonian cinematography with dignity.