A byahme mladi (We Were Young). 1961. Bulgaria. Directed by Binka Zhelyazkova. Screenplay by Hristo Ganev. With Dimitar Buynozov, Rumyana Karabelova, Lyudmila Cheshmedzhieva. 35mm. In Bulgarian; English subtitles. 110 min.
During World War II, by way of covert communication in besieged Sofia, Veska joins a group of teenage anti-fascists. Here she meets Dimo, a handsome, passionate member of the small but ferocious resistance. As the group strives to thwart Nazi advancements in Sofia, romance blossoms between Veska and Dimo. With an ambitious stylistic eye, Zhelyazkova masterfully directs a story of forbidden love and the relentlessness of teenage conviction. Believed to be the first feature film ever directed by a woman in Bulgaria, We Were Young entered MoMA’s collection in 1983, as part of an initiative to increase the archive’s holdings of postwar Eastern European cinema.