THE FLYING CIRCUS (CIRKU FLUTURUES)
Kosovo, Albania, North Macedonia , 2019 / 115 min / Albanian and Serbian OV with English subt. / Black Comedy
At the verge of the Kosovo war, four actors from Pristina cross illegally into Albania to meet their idol, Monty Python’s Michael Palin.
Kosovo is in the verge of war. The Dodona Theatre, the last remaining public institution in Priština, is closed by Serbian authorities. The theatre had been playing The Flying Circus, a production inspired by the eponymous legendary British TV series. However, the play’s four main actors, Kushtrim, Donat, Fatmir and Lekë, are invited to a theatre festival in neighbouring Albania with their production. Since they do not have valid travel documents and the journey to Albania is becoming increasingly dangerous, they are hesitant to go. But when they hear that their idol, Monty Python’s own famed Michael Palin, will be filming in Albania during the festival days, the four friends decide they can’t pass on the opportunity to meet the acclaimed actor. Crossing the border illegally, they set out on a perilous trip across the Balkans.
Based on true events, The Flying Circus is a dark and captivating comedy about artistic resilience and foolishness.
Free screening, seat reservation required. Reservations open in early January 2021.
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“This Kosovan/Albanian/North Macedonian production is a light-hearted and conventional comedy of errors. It’s about artistic expression as a tool for personal and political liberation. It’s urgent in its simplicity, spiced with political flavours, prescient messages and moral dilemmas. Should the four man return to Kosovo before the war breaks and fight for their country’s freedom, or should they remain in Albania, where they can get their message across through their art?” Victor Fraga, Dmovies, 27/11/2019
“It’s a cute concept that, one imagines, could easily go wrong. Luckily, Berisha clearly believes that thou shalt not take the name of thy Monty Python in vain. The love is there, sure, but ultimately, it’s a story that stands up on its own, thanks to some assured direction and a truly entertaining team of performers […] The Flying Circus is not just about those crazy Brits with their fish, bananas and old pyjamas, but also the belief that, no matter what happens, art can conquer all. […] This easy and natural chemistry, helping out with some overly on-the-nose film references, is what elevates the whole proposition […] there is some welcome darkness to this crowd-pleaser, and a rather brilliant solution to a practical problem that hangs over the whole thing, kept aside for the very end.” Marta Balaga, Cineuropa, 28/11/2019
- Best International Feature, Santa Barbara International Film Festival, 2020 (USA)
- International Jury’s Great Prize, Festival War on Screen, 2020 (France)
- Best International Feature Film, Fabrique du Cinéma Awards, 2019 (Italy)
Fatos Berisha is a Kosovan director who studied at the Faculty of Arts at the University of Priština, as well as at the Royal Court Theatre in London and at the UK’s National Film and Television School. For Kosovan public TV, he directed 260 episodes of the popular series Familja Moderne, the 60-minute fiction film Blood Pressure (2007), as well as numerous video clips and TV commercials. He then directed 8 episodes of the television series Inside Justice (2010-2011) for the Croatian production company Mainframe. Fatos Berisha has been very successful in the field of theatre, producing more than 20 plays in Kosovo and Albania. He is the co-founder and artistic director of the Prishtina International Film Festival and the Urban Theatre in Priština. With The Flying Circus (2019) he directed his first feature that was selected in international film festivals.
- 2019 – Cirku Fluturues
- 2010 – Brenda drejtesise (TV series)
- 2007 – Tensioni i larte
- 2001-2011 – Familja Moderne (TV series)