Warchild is set against the background of the Bosnian war. However, director Christian Wagner principally wanted to tell a universally recognisable story that would bring home to viewers the impact of war on ordinary people’s lives. It is a story about a mother’s search for her child after the war but it is also a story about the dislocation of family today, as adults and children everywhere face the consequences of separation, relocation and migration. In all of his films, Wagner is interested in looking behind the façade.
At the start of the film, Senada is a modern young woman who seems to be leading a normal life, but behind the surface she is actually restricted and tormented by the conviction that her daughter is still alive.
With renowned German cinematographer Thomas Mauch they created a particular ‘look’ for the film that was low-key and
atmospheric. The soundtrack also contributes to the atmosphere and mirrors Senada’s emotional state throughout. Warchild belongs to Wagner’s Balkan Blues Trilogy, which begins with a short film, Zita and continues with Alcatrash, currently in production. The three films are all connected with the Balkans and reflect Wagner’s interest in the movement of peoples throughout Europe. The cast and crew of Warchild communicated in English, German, Croatian, Serbian and Bosnian. Labina Mitevska who plays Senada learnt German for her role. She, along with Senad Basic (Samir) and Zdenko Jelcic (Dzigera), are all stars in their own countries. The film was shot over thirty days in three countries and on seven locations.
The trilogy segments:
"BALKAN BLUES TRILOGY" Part 1
Prologue 20 minutes (completed)
Zita, a young Croatian who has lost her home and family during the war,
ends up in the dreary wasteland of a Schwabian town, on the front lines
of a “dead” marriage. Catastrophe occurs as the result of
her simply being alive. Zita, who has not been dealt with kindly by Fate,
shares responsibility due to her inability to make a decision. The victim
is also the perpetrator."
BALKAN BLUES TRILOGY" Part 2
103 Minutes (completed)
BALKAN BLUES TRILOGY" Part 3
120 Minutes (planning/in pre-production)
ALCATRASH drama, road movie
Three young women, the German-born children of “guest workers”,
are on their way back to the homeland: the Croatian, Maria, has the task
of smuggling black market money over the border. She picks up Artemis
on the side of the road, a destitute hitchhiker who is heading as quickly
as possible to northern Greece to locate her dying father. On the way
to Yugoslavia, they are followed by an orange-red 70s VW- Porsche. The
Rumanian ex-model, Alexa, is sitting inside. An argument at a rest stop
leads to Artemis getting into the other car with Alexa. In the beginning,
there is no indication that the three women-after taking a series of mysterious
detours-will end up in Rumania as prisoners on one of the lost islands
in the Danube delta.
the last 10 years, 1.6 million children have been killed in armed conflicts
throughout the world. That's one every three minutes. War Child believes
that children should never be the victims of armed conflict. Through
projects in DRC, Bosnia, Iraq and Afghanistan, War Child has succeeded
in delivering access to health, education and recreational services
to some of the most vulnerable children in the world." (www.warchild.org)