Ziveli: Medicine for the Heart

  • Les Blank |
  • 1987 |
  • 51 minutes |
  • COLOR |

Produced by Les Blank. Edited by Maureen Gosling.

This film features the culture and music of the Serbian-American communities of Chicago and California. Made in association with Serbian-American anthropologist Andrej Simic and the University of Southern California's Visual Anthropology program, the film focuses on the vital cultural strengths of these immigrants from Yugoslavia, who helped form the backbone of industrial America. Music, dancing, the Orthodox church and other community activities are highlighted.

"Most documentaries that examine ethnic cultures in America are, by nature, dull. Les Blank's ... film about Serbians in America is fun. Much of the credit goes to the Serbians themselves, who, unlike most American ethnic groups, have not only maintained their cultural identity, but have strengthened it here. Blank capitalizes on the sensuous elements of the culture - the music, the dance, the food, the parties - and makes the necessary historical background relevant and interesting. There are ... some marvelous pieces of filmmaking."
- LA Weekly