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still The Death of a Horse (Vdekja e Kalit) (Saimir Kumbaro, AL 1992)

The Death of a Horse

Eye International Conference: The Death of a Horse

The annual Eye International Conference is an opportunity for scholars, archivists, curators, filmmakers, and students from across the world to gather and explore contemporary professional and academic issues affecting audiovisual heritage today.The 2022 edition will focus on the imbalance or current misrepresentation of global audiovisual heritage holdings, looking in particular at the alarming scarcity of audiovisual heritage from the Global South in the digital space.

poster The Death of a Horse (Vdekja e Kalit) (Saimir Kumbaro, AL 1992)
This film screening and presentation is part of the 7th Eye International Conference on Global Audiovisual Archiving (29-31 May 2022).


  • Film: The Death of a Horse (Vdekja e kalit) (Saimir Kumbaro, AL 1992, 82')

    For four decades, Albania was Eastern Europe’s most secretive regime. For millions of Albanians living within its sealed borders, daily life was far from the socialist paradise lensed by the state-run New Albania film studio. Albania's first post-communist film, The Death of a Horse (1992), vividly captures the Balkan nation's traumatic past while reflecting on the tremendous social and economic challenges to come.

    Crafted months after the dictatorship’s fall, the low-budget film was shot on Kodak and developed on AGFA. This fateful choice caused Cannes to remove it from competition for not meeting the festival's technical standards. The Death of a Horse is based on a true story. A military horse trainer tries to save his championship horse and ends up caught in a personal catastrophe, the kind that affected thousands of lives in Communist Albania.

  • Presentation: Preserving Cinema's Secret Past: Albania's The Death of a Horse

    Filmmaker Iris Elezi (Albanian Cinematheque) presents the restoration of The Death of a Horse which was supported by the Association of European Cinematheques and the Creative MEDIA program. Preserving the vital and dramatic The Death of a Horse is a perfect example of archival collaboration: its damaged negative was rescued in the nick of time in order to find new audiences and rightfully take its unique place in the film canon.



Saimir Kumbaro

Production year



102 min.

Event language








Part of

Eye International Conference 2022

Eye Filmmuseum, the University of Amsterdam (UvA), Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis (ASCA), and the Association of Moving Image Archivists (AMIA) will present the 7th Eye International Conference on ‘Global Audiovisual Archiving: Exchange of Knowledge and Practices’.

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Francis Alys Reel Unreel
still The Death of a Horse (Vdekja e Kalit) (Saimir Kumbaro, AL 1992)
still The Death of a Horse (Vdekja e Kalit) (Saimir Kumbaro, AL 1992)
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  • 8 June — 29 September 2024

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