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Before the Rain

            "Before the Rain", a film by Milcho Manchevski, is a compilation of three individual stories that all tie together in the end. Each story shares a common reoccurring theme of internal and external conflict, as well as related symbolism. The main conflict that I chose to write about is the theme of "impossible love".
             The first part of the movie called "Words", which reveals itself to actually be the end of the movie, takes place in a Macedonian monastery. This is where we meet Kiril, an Orthodox Christian monk, who has taken a vow of silence. Kiril is a very devoted young man who appears entirely disconnected and unmoved by the realities that surround him. He is a part of the Church, and therefore he is supposed to remain neutral among the ongoing conflict of ethnicity that is occurring around him. .
             Kiril finds himself caught in a conflict between right and wrong when Zamira, a youthful Albanian Muslim girl who is being pursued by the Macedonian militia, shows up at the church. Not far behind Zamira are her pursuers. During the first encounter that Kiril has with these men, he watches in horror as one of them opens fire on an innocent cat with a machine gun until it is completely blown to pieces. This horrific sight nauseates Kiril and he begins to vomit. This vomiting is a reoccurring event that takes place in all three parts of the movie.
             Kiril chooses to do what he thinks is right, and protects Zamira. Against the rules of the monastery, Kiril allows Zamira to hide in his cell, after denying any knowledge of her presence to his superiors. Eventually, Kiril and Zamira are exposed by the monastery, resulting in Kiril's banishment. The two then set off on their own in search of protection. This is the point in which Kiril breaks his vow of silence and takes sides. The two share an impossible love for one another. They both come from completely different religious backgrounds, with Kiril being Christian and Zamira being Muslim.

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