That Summer of White Roses


War films

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Time Out says

Although the riverside bathing beach proves popular with the Nazis (this being Yugoslavia in 1945), the token lifeguard - simple-minded Andrija (Conti) - hardly has his work cut out, and can therefore spend his days gazing at the water and mummering on about the 'river demon'. Considering the proximity to the Nazi base, it seems perverse that fugitive Ana (George) should pick this spot as a hideout; even stranger that she thinks a rush marriage to the village idiot will deflect suspicion. The gentle rhythms of life continue until Andrija dramatically saves a fat old gent from drowning. Is he partisan or Nazi? Whatever, good-hearted Andrija seems fated to attract unwelcome attention... Conti invests the character with cheerful dignity, but remains some way short of the noble and tragic dimensions hopefully indicated. The elegiac riverside scenes, set against crashing portrayals of Nazi swinishness, work rather better than the romantic or action stuff.

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