Once-acclaimed Serb helmer-writer Milos Radivojevic continues the pokey, obscure, glum and only briefly witty manner he displayed in his recent "Awakening the Dead" with the even glummer and pokier "The Reject."

Clearly in some kind of funk, once-acclaimed Serb helmer-writer Milos Radivojevic continues the pokey, obscure, glum and only briefly witty manner he displayed in his recent “Awakening the Dead” with the even glummer and pokier “The Reject.” Once again, Radivojevic’s leading man and producer, Svetozar Cvetkovic, stars as a mod Serb guy who ponders his place in the world — this time after being fired from his longtime banking job. It’s supremely hard to care after 20 minutes, and outside of local auds, others are likely to ignore it wholesale.

Cvetkovic’s man, named On, is first seen dreaming he’s on a beach, only to actually find himself in bed with a hooker. At the bank (viewed here as a set of stylish offices out of a Kubrick film), he dawdles and meanders, so it’s not surprising he loses his job. A glimpse of some emotion appears when he’s around his ex-wife and child, but even these moments are cast in a chill that neither affects nor moves, and his sense of being an honest man in a culture of corruption is talked about endlessly, but never actually seen.

The Reject

Serbia

Production

A Testament Films presentation in co-production with Mapa/Magic Box/Aatalanta CQ/Concept Films Produced by Svetozar Cvetkovic. Co-producers, Milos Radivojevic, Nemanja Petrovic, Radmila Vojvodic, Miroslav Stanic, Brana Srdic. Directed, written by Milos Radivojevic.

Crew

Camera (color), Radoslav Vladic; editors, Milena Predic, Lazar Predojev; music, Kornelije Kovac; production designer, Nemanja Petrovic; set designer, Biljana Belada; costume designer, Snezana Pesic Rajic; sound (Dolby Digital), Dordje Durovic; sound re-recording mixer, Branko Neskov. Reviewed at Palm Springs Film Festival (World Cinema Now), Jan. 9, 2008. (Also in Exit festival (Novi Sad).) Serbo-Croatian dialogue. Running time: 103 MIN.

With

Svetozar Cvetkovic, Aleksandra Jankovic, Ljiljana Medjesi, Renata Ulmanski, Ana Maljevic.
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