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Liberation Day (2016)

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ALL ART IS PROPAGANDA. George Orwell ...AND ALL PROPAGANDA IS ART. Laibach

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Credited cast:
Boris Benko ...
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Tomaz Cubej ...
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Milan Fras ...
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Janez Gabric ...
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Tomislav Gangl ...
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Matej Gobec ...
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Primoz Hladnik ...
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Luka Jamnik ...
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Mary Sun Kim ...
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Rok Lopatic ...
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Gregor Musa ...
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Ivan Novak ...
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Saso Pusnik ...
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Mina Spiler ...
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Morten Traavik ...
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Under the loving but firm guidance of an old fan turned director and cultural diplomat and to the surprise of a whole world, the ex-Yugoslavian cult band Laibach becomes the first foreign rock group ever to perform in the fortress state of North Korea. Confronting strict ideology and cultural differences, the band struggles to get their songs through the needle's eye of censorship before they can be unleashed on an audience never before exposed to alternative rock'n'roll. Meanwhile, propaganda loudspeakers are being set up at the border between the two Koreas and a countdown to war is announced. The hills are alive...with the sound of music.

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18 October 2017 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Islaisvinimo diena  »

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What's Most Amazing Is This is a Documentary!
18 July 2017 | by See all my reviews

Laibach is a band that formed in 1980 in what was then Yugoslavia, now Slovenia, as an art rock project that aimed to fight fascism by wrapping itself in the uniforms and symbols of fascism and using highly militarized sounding beats to obscure its actual anti-fascist agenda. Dangerous enough in Tito's Yugoslavia, this film suggests that they felt a bit "orphaned" when that country broke up following Tito's death, but they have continued on writing and performing. Fast forward to 2015, when North Korea celebrates its 70th "Liberation Day," the day in 1945 when Japan (which had occupied Korea for decades) was finally kicked out of the country, and Kim Jung Il became the first Beloved Leader of the modern age. Why would North Korea invite Laibach to perform at a major theatre in Pyonyang to celebrate that day? Not sure that can be really explained, but it actually did happen, and "Liberation Day" is the documentary about that event. The co- director Morten Traavik had visited North Korea in the past and also directed various Laibach videos, and somehow he managed to set this thing up. The film is really interesting in terms of how the band had to work with North Korean workers to set up their stage and various multimedia inputs that they use in their live shows; but honestly, the very premise of the film - North Korea invites an anti-fascist Western band that fights fascism by emulating it to extremes! - is worth the price of admission on its very own. Oh, and if you don't know Laibach, check out their version of "Sympathy for the Devil" or "Life is Life" on YouTube to get a flavour of how they might choose to render, oh, for example, the soundtrack for "The Sound of Music" - as they did for this event.


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