In the remote highlands of Albania, an 18-year-old girl is shot dead in a bitter family feud. While the Kanun—an age-old tribal code that was partly revived in this region after the fall of Communism—permits violent retribution, it also offers an alternative route. The bishop and the chair of the NGO Committee of Nationwide Reconciliation both urge the grieving father to take the second option.

But, how do you reconcile with a neighbor who has so deeply and permanently wounded you and your family? In a land where emotions are not discussed and women do not speak up outside the family, the old bottled up feelings of a long intense feud have no way out. In this first long documentary by Marja Zidar, she hows how challenging it is to get past pride, sorrow, and rage to break the chain of conflict—especially when the two sides have such differing interpretations of the incident.

idar frames this situation in scenes that speak volumes without words, with shots of the majestic landscape, of children watching, of the father carrying a commemorative cross to the grave, and intimate close-ups of the people involved. The mother stays silent while the men deliberate. This feud acts as a microcosm of some of the great conflicts around the globe.

Multiple award winning,  Reconciliation has screened at CPHDOX, Sydney Film Festival and many others.

Directed by Marija Zidar, 2021, 82' Vertigo, Slovenia.