Against the backdrop of the Serbian countryside’s idyllic pastoral beauty, Ice tells the story of Milivoje, a young farmer living with his mother and grandparents. In the run up to a faithful harvest season both he and his family feel the impact of the fates conspiring against them.

Ice is a beautifully captured example of Serbian melodrama and feels not just like a family drama but an allegory for the end of an era. Ice deliberately picks a point in the history of the former Yugoslavia that not only evokes the romance of a bygone age, but also has the portent of imminent change and the undercurrent of suppressed unrest. Milijove’s struggles with the girls he loves, the attainment of a driver’s licence and the successful harvest are representative of the struggles of the youth from rural Yugoslavia towards the end of Tito’s regime in the ‘70s.

Beautifully shot, with superb performances and a haunting score, Ice will make you fall in love with a rural Serbia that we can only dream still exists.

Mark Moynihan