The Fog of Srebrenica
“The war is finished. But for us, the victims, it continues.” The war being alluded to by a still-grieving woman in director Samir Mehanovic’s The Fog of Srebrenica is the one that took place in Bosnia and Herzegovina between 1992 and 1995. Specifically, though, she and the other interviewees from Srebrenica are referring to the genocide that took place in their town beginning on July 11, 1995, when over 8,000 Muslim Bosniaks were slaughtered by members of the Serb Army. Since that time, dozens of documentary films have grappled with the humanitarian crisis that resulted from that massacre, although few of those productions are as clear-eyed in their assertion of the need to retain painful memories of the past as The Fog of Srebrenica. One after another, survivors provide defiant testimonies and eyewitness accounts while calling out the failures of Western governments to hold the perpetrators of that genocide accountable. Through subtle use of onscreen text, archival footage, and chapter headings that lend contextual information and structural integrity to its traumatized subjects’ collective assertion of unending pain, Mehanovic’s bracing, artfully composed film cuts through the titular fog and gives viewers a rare glimpse into the lives of people who were conveniently overlooked or largely ignored over two decades ago.
– By David Scott Diffrient