# 39 min 2021
The year 2020 marked the 80thanniversary of the Croatian National Football League.To mark that anniversary, Croatian National Football Television (HNTV) premiered a feature-length documentary that takes us through the high drama of three historical matches--the first in 1940 with Switzerland, the second in 1956 with Indonesia in its only match under the Yugoslav regime, and its third match in 1990 with the United States on the eve of the Croatian War for Independence.The link between these three matches is powerful.
The film was released on October 17, 2020, exactly 30years to the day of the extraordinary match between Croatia and the United States.The young, small HNTV crew that produced this excellent documentary did a first-rate job of capturing the high drama of that match through archival footage and touching interviews in which team members recollect the highly charged emotions surrounding that event.
Until the release of this documentary, the full story of the Croatian National Football League was not widely known or spoken of.One cannot find a single newspaper news clip regarding the 1956 match, and even on the 30thanniversary of the 1990 game, the deeply patriotic story of that victory was hardly mentioned in Croatia.
The documentary captures the intensity of those events, placing them in the political and historical context of Croatia’s long struggle for independence.The title of the film points to this tiny country’s history of overcoming odds even before its bronze World Cup win in 1998 and silver win in 2018.Thus, the film is significant both for understanding Croatian football over the past 80 years and for understanding the spirit of the 4 million Croatian people who have fought for their sovereignty against forces that ruled then and continue to influence the country and region today.
Academic Article: None
Director Davor Komerički
Producer Nenad Petrić
Executive Producer Ivan Blažićko
Screenplay Davor Komerički
Editor Zlatko Mijoč
Film Genre Documentary, History, Sport
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