Director Emir Kusturica
Original title Guernica
Release 1978
Original language czech
Length 25 mn
Script Pavel Sykora & Emir Kusturica
Photography (black & white) Emir Kusturica


  • First Prize at the Student Film Festival of Karlovy-Vary


FAMU student film, the story is based on a Antonije Isaković novel. It tells the history of a Jewish little boy facing the fear of the anti-semitism. His father brings him in 1937 to the Exposition Universelle in Paris, where he discovers Picasso's painting. Some years later, the nazis come and persecute the Jews. The father explains to his son : “They just want to examinate us because we have a big nose.” When his family is taken away, the boy stays alone at home, he looks at the family photos and cuts all the noses off. He sticks them together an calls it “Guernica”.



This film is available on a French short films compilation : Le Court des Grands. An interesting interview of Emir Kusturica on this first film, as well as a pertinent analysis feature as bonus for this film. The picture quality is remarkable, but the French subtitles are imposed.

This double DVD contains the following films :

  • George Lucas : 1:42.08 to qualify (1966) - 8 mn
  • Ridley Scott : A boy and a bicycle (1965) - 27 mn
  • Robert Zemeckis : The lift (1972) - 7 mn
  • Lars von Trier : Nocturne (1980) - 9 mn
  • Terry Gilliam : Storytime (1968) - 9 mn
  • Paul Verhoeven : A lizzard too much (1960) - 35 mn
  • Tony Scott : One of the missing (1969) - 25 mn
  • Emir Kusturica : Guernica (1978) - 18 mn
  • Luc Besson : L'avant-dernier (1981) - 10 mn
  • Roman Polanski : Le gros et le maigre (1960) - 16 mn
  • Jane Campion : Peel (1982) - 9 mn
  • Stephen Frears : The burning (1967) - 30 mn

Buy online :


At the beginning of the film, te father tells to his son that a German soldier discovering Pablo Picasso's painting Guernica asked Picasso :

  • Did you do that ?
  • No, YOU did it.

First real 35mm film, it deals with big emotion and intelligence of a difficult and painful subject, specially with such a short format. The image is highly worked out, and we immediately see that the young Emir had swallowed the work of all the big masters of the cinema : vertical travellings, reflections (mirrors, water, windows), self projection of the image of the others, importance of the family, etc. This film was already a condensed version of the visual explosion that was yet to come.


Emir Kusturica's short films

Guernica - Seven days in the life of a bird - Blue Gypsy - Our Life

en/guernica.txt · Last modified: 2007/03/11 15:08 by matthieu1