April 23, 2014

Angelina Jolie’s Bosnian romance continues to be criticized


By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: Angelina Jolie will be busy promoting “The Tourist,” her romantic thriller with Johnny Depp, this week and next, but her attentions likely will be drifting toward her directorial debut, a Bosnian love story that continues to receive criticism from angered Bosnian rape victims.

Specific victims of sexual violence that occurred during the Bosnian conflict of the 1990s lashed out at Jolie on Monday for the perceived content of her story, which involves a love affair between a Bosnian woman and a Serbian man.

“Angelina Jolie’s ignorant attitude towards victims says enough about the scenario and gives us the right to continue having doubts about it,” the Women Victims of War (WVW) association said in a letter that was published on Monday.

The letter allegedly was sent to the United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR), for which Jolie is a goodwill ambassador.

It’s the first of several vocal criticisms that have been lobbed at Jolie’s film. At one point, Jolie was forbidden from filming in Sarajevo, though restrictions eventually were loosened. Weeks ago, Jolie’s crew traveled to Sarajevo to film exterior shots, while the first-time director supervised shots in Hungary.

Jolie has argued that she did not include any rape scenes in her controversial love story. She also said she’d be willing to meet with the association members to clear up any misunderstandings.

“We have insisted to meet Angelina Jolie since we don’t want to be wrongly presented in the world. … Our voices are worthwhile and we should have got much more respect,” the WVW letter said. “Angelina made a big mistake. We feel that she did not act like a real UNHCR ambassador and we believe that she has no more credibility to remain the ambassador.”

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About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC FilmCritic.com, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

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