Have you ever been fired, made redundant, or faced with the pressure to retire? Well, everyone has gone down that path at least once in their lives and this is what Simona, an architect working at a foreign architect bureau in Zagreb, experiences in “Plan A”, Tomislav Luetić’s latest short film that is having its International Premiere in the Short Film Competition at the 23rd Sarajevo Film Festival.
Luetić doesn’t rely on suspense to get his message through. As a matter of fact, we know what is about to happen the minute Simona is summoned to her boss’s office. Luetić takes the ace he has up his sleeve with Simona’s reaction – and that is perhaps the short’s best feature. With a commanding direction, and yet a very common story, Luetić makes a short about being fired or facing the pressure to retire, how to react and stand up for one’s self and one’s rights. What is interesting is that Simona is not complacent. Also, she is not fired by a man, but by a woman, which gives the film a whole other perspective that is all the more heightened by excellent performances by the two female leads Ksenija Marinković and Jadranka Đokić, the latter embodying perfectly the bossy woman stereotype. This exceptional female two-hander made up of two very different ladies conveys the strength of women through two different positions and roles. Moreover, “Plan A” is a faithful recreation and denunciation of the time we live in, a time where high-positioned newcomers are placed in foreign companies and deliver speeches where corporate “blabla” and euphemisms abound. “Plan A” also tackles the ever so relevant issue of ageism, especially for women. Furthermore, the short’s title is a nod to what the characters discuss at the beginning of the film, how the boss changes their work from plan A to plan B just because she can, and her intention of activating “Plan B”, but also to the first (draft) of architectural plans.
With a (perhaps inadvertent) hint of feminism, exceptional opening and ending credit sequences, and a timely yet universal story, “Plan A” is not only a necessary short but also an extremely nuanced and well-crafted one too.
Production: Blank_filmski inkubator, Kinoklub Zagreb, Arhiv (Croatia, 2016)
Producer: Igor Jelinović
Director: Tomislav Luetić
Screenplay: Tomislav Luetić
Cinematography: Rino Barbir
Music: Tomislav Luetić
Production Design: Pero Vuković
Costume design: Irena Stolla
Editing: Karlo Vorih
Cast: Ksenija Marinković, Jadranka Đokić,
Color – 15’50 min.
Premiere: 12/06/2017 (Festival Mediteranskog Filma Split)