When Father Was Away on Business
|When Father Was Away on Business|
|Directed by||Emir Kusturica|
|Produced by||Mirza Pašić|
|Written by||Abdulah Sidran|
|Starring||Moreno De Bartolli
|Music by||Zoran Simjanović|
|Editing by||Andrija Zafranović|
|Release dates||September 12, 1985 (West Germany)
October 11, 1985 (U.S.)
|Running time||136 minutes|
|Box office||$25,053 (West Germany only)
$16,131 (USA only)
When Father Was Away on Business (Serbo-Croat: Otac na službenom putu, Отац на службеном путу) is a 1985 Yugoslav film by Serbian director Emir Kusturica. The screenplay was written by the Bosnian dramatist Abdulah Sidran. Its subtitle is A Historical Love Film.
Set in post-World War II Yugoslavia during the Informbiro period, the film tells the story through the eyes of the young boy Malik. His father Meša (played by Miki Manojlović) has been suspected of working for Cominform and sent to a labour camp after a careless remark about a political newspaper cartoon.
The movie opens in June 1950 with a local's serenading field workers. He sings Mexican songs because it's "safer", and children climb trees and play around. The story is from the perspective of the boy, Malik, whose mother Sena tells him that his father is on a business trip. Malik is a chronic sleepwalker.
After a while, Meša's wife and children rejoin him in Zvornik. Malik meets Maša, the daughter of a Russian doctor. He falls in love with her, but last sees her when the ambulance takes her away.
At the wedding of his maternal uncle Zijah, Malik witnesses his father's affair with a woman pilot. She later tries to commit suicide by using a toilet's flush cord. Sena reconciles with her brother Zijah, who's been diagnosed with diabetes.
- Moreno De Bartolli as Malik Malkoč
- Miki Manojlović as Mehmed "Meša" Malkoč
- Mirjana Karanović as Senija "Sena" Malkoč (née Zulfikarpašić)
- Mira Furlan as Ankica Vidmar
- Mustafa Nadarević as Zijah "Zijo" Zulfikarpašić
- Predrag Laković as Franjo
- Pavle Vujisić as Muzafer Zulfikarpašić
- Slobodan Aligrudić as Ostoja Cekić
- Aleksandar Dorčev as Dr. Evgeni Liakhov
- Silvija Puharić as Masha Liakhov
- Emir Hadžihafizbegović as Fahro Zulfikarpašić
- Davor Dujmović as Mirza Malkoč
- Eva Ras as Ilonka Petrović
- Jelena Čović as Nataša Petrović
- Amer Kapetanović as Serjoža Petrović
- Zoran Radmilović as Brko Pilot
- Tomislav Gelić as Hamdo Malkoč, barber
- 1985 Cannes Film Festival: the Palme d'Or (Golden Palm) and the FIPRESCI Prize,
- Nominated for the 1985 Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film
- "Festival de Cannes: When Father Was Away on Business". festival-cannes.com. Retrieved 2009-06-28.
- When Father Was Away on Business at the Internet Movie Database
- When Father Was Away on Business at allmovie