Morena: At what cost? [recenzja filmu / Mastercard OFF Camera]

The Mastercard OFF Camera Festival has brought many great titles. Our must-see list included, among others, the movie “Morena” by Antonita Alamat Kocijanovic. He won the Camera d’Or at Cannes last year.

Mastercard OFF Camera is worth watching, not only because of the films competing in the international and Polish competition. Additional sections had their gems too. One of them is “Morena”.

Teen Julija grew up on one of the Croatian islands. She’s a great swimmer and diver (she’s even represented her country in international competitions), but she dreams of a big world, or at least getting away from where she currently lives. This situation is not improved by the fact that the girl lives with her domineering father (Leon Losev) and a beautiful but very submissive mother (Danica Korsic). One day, a light appeared in the tunnel in the form of a rich guest. Not only does his father’s ex-“boyfriend” (Cliff Curtis) visit them to cherish old memories, he questions the purchase of land and the construction of a luxury resort. Thanks to this money, the Gulija family was able to move to Zagreb. But it turned out that the young woman had a different plan.

“Morena” is another new show presented at the Krakow Festival, based on a play jointly written by director and Frank Graziano. In addition, Sikelia Productions, owned by Martin Scorsese, is responsible for production. The title was appreciated for beautiful images at last year’s Cannes festival, but don’t let the beautiful scenery mislead you. It’s a story full of emotions – violence, eroticism, jealousy and feelings that show through simplification. This is how we learn about the world of Julia, a teenager imprisoned in the proverbial paradise. The girl wants to escape from the custody of her father, who always asks for something and never gives a kind word or appreciates. Subsequent orders and orders slowly cause the girl to rebel, and this will culminate in the arrival of the rich Javier. The family’s former acquaintance, her father’s boss, and her mother’s admirer are rich and looking for another great deal. Would a hotel in the Croatian islands be a profitable business? Julia doesn’t really care, she wants to get out of here ASAP. At any price. Even when her father locked her in a basement below sea level, she somehow managed to swim ashore. And all this thanks to the nickname Morena a predator who hunts with his father every day.

Grazija Filippovich, who plays the main role, is the brilliant Golega. She’s full of reserve, anger, and reservedness (plus, she has no filters and says what she likes no matter the circumstances) regarding her dad — I think many of us could sympathize with that when we were going through our teens ourselves. There is also the first (momentary) infatuation and the pursuit of a specific goal. After all, there is a world full of possibilities next to it. All you have to do is extend your hand. Only her father who knows everything prevents her from achieving her dreams. The man does not intend to give up his offspring so easily, moreover, he understands that the daughter will not succeed, because there will always be a better person. This wing cut is known and many people have certainly done the same, regardless of their financial situation or where they live. And what about the mother? Although he could see perfectly well what was going on, he wouldn’t do anything about it. She loves life so far known. He is more afraid of the unknown and change, so he prefers to stay with his dominant partner. However, this does not alienate teenagers. In the end, she will show her father that she can do many things to get where she wants.

Is Eden always perfect? Unfortunately, it can sometimes be worse than hell.


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