‘Tell them you’re 24’, advises Petrunya’s mother as her daughter heads off to another interview. But Petrunya is 32; moreover, she has studied history, a subject that no one in Macedonia seems to need. So, there she sits in front of her potential employer, a factory owner, who looks down on her floral dress and refuses to take her seriously. On her way home Petrunya decides to take the plunge. It is Epiphany and, like every year, the young men of the city are diving for the holy cross that the priest has thrown into the icy river. This time, Petrunya is quicker than everyone else and ends up holding the trophy aloft for the TV cameras. For one whole day and one night, she will defend the cross, accompanied by much public commotion and against the closed ranks of the male world.
“/.../ Petrunya’s essence is self-realisation. This is her growth. Everything begins quite innocently. We first see her as a girl with no ambition or plans, more insecure than self-confident. But she leaves the police station as a self-reliant woman. As someone willing to change the world. I find it important that future generations, mainly young women, gain a healthy measure of confidence. We the women have to know that we can.” (Teona Strugar Mitevska)
Teona Strugar Mitevska
Born in Skopje, Macedonia, in 1974. Her first brush with film was as a child actor. She has a degree in graphic design and studied film at the Tisch School of the Arts in New York. Whilst based in Brussels, Teona is an established Macedonian director who addresses topics related to her homeland. She runs the Sisters and Brother Mitevski production company with her siblings Vuk and Labina.