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Supported by Film Hub Scotland, part of the BFI's Film Audience Network, and funded by Screen Scotland and National Lottery Funding from the BFI
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"This is a richly intelligent drama, in which every word and every shot counts."
Hive ( Zgjoi) (KOSOVO) 2021 Drama
Director : Blerta Basholli
Starring : Yllka Gashi
1 hr 24 min
Hive was inspired by the true story of Fahrije Hoti and her struggles to start an organic ajvar business with other Kosovo Albanian women widowed by Serbian forces during the Krushë e Madhe massacres of March 1999. In telling Hoti’s story in her exemplary first feature, Blerta Basholli joins fellow Kosovo-born directors Antoneta Kastrati, Norika Sefa, Lendita Zeqiraj and Blerta Zeqiri in showing how Kosovo’s recovery from trauma involves severing patriarchal shackles.
Deprived of income since her husband Agim disappeared, Fahrije (Yllka Gashi) must provide for her adolescent daughter Zana (Kaona Sylejmani), younger son Edon (Mal Noah Safqiu), and invalid father-in-law Haxhi (Çun Lajçi). The honey she collects from the hives Agim made isn’t selling, so she decides to add ajvar to her stock. She and the impoverished widows who join her cottage industry collective find a new enemy in their midst – the surviving village men, who regard the Kanun, the repressive Albanian traditional laws, as holy writ.
Basholli has named the Dardenne brothers’ Rosetta (1999), Jasmila Zbanic’s Grbavica (2006), and Cristian Mungiu’s 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days (2007) among the films she watched when writing Hive. Though she hasn’t mentioned Ken Loach’s work, there are similarities. Loach has constantly depicted how working people are betrayed by those from whom they might reasonably expect help and protection. This also holds true for Hive.
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