Before the Rain

This magazine cited arrested Development's Tennessee, directed by native Macedonian Milcho Manchevski, among the 100 best music videos. Now, in his feature-directing debut, Manchevski succeeds on a grand scale with a groundbreaking film of love and war that is the newly declared Republic of Macedonia's first entry for the foreign-film Oscar. Audacious and powerfully moving, Rain brings home the civil war in the Balkans with shocking immediacy.

Manchevski, who lives in New York, returned to his country to film the three-part story. In the first part, a young monk (Gregoire Colin) risks tragedy to hide an Albanian girl (Labina Mitevska). The next part, set in London, focuses on an editor (Katrin Cartlidge) caught in a cafe shootout that mirrors her emotional conflict with her husband (Jay Villiers) and her war-photographer lover (the superb Rade Serbedzija in a performance of dark fire). In the last part, the photographer returns to his home in Macedonia, where the plot strands are united. Cinematographer Manuel Teran brings grave beauty and telling detail to Manchevski's stirring cry from the heart.

From The Archives Issue 704: March 23, 1995
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