Man Is Not a Bird is an antic, free-form portrait of the love lives of two less-than-heroic men who labor in a copper factory. For this first feature, following years of making documentaries and experimental shorts, Dusan Makavejev and his crew set up shop in Bor, a mining town in the mountains near Yugoslavia’s border with Bulgaria, interviewing the workers in the region and even shooting footage inside the local ore factories. Yet the result is hardly a staid tribute to the working class. Also featuring seductive Milena Dravic, who would go on to star in Makavejev’s groundbreaking WR: Mysteries of the Organism, Man Is Not a Bird is one of cinema’s most assured and daring debuts.
Join Janus Films in 2018 as we celebrate the centennial of the Swedish director’s birth with a traveling retrospective of all of his theatrical films!
Commissioned to make a working-class family drama, up-and-coming director Rainer Werner Fassbinder took the assignment and ran, upending expectations by depicting social realities in West Germany from a critical—yet far from cynical—perspective.
Rainer Werner Fassbinder
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