Several women — independent, strong-willed, beautiful — try to hold on in the world of shifting influences that is New York City. Each struggles to overcome her personal conflicts, against the backdrop of greater political struggles and the global Occupy Movements.
Women's personal lives and struggles collide with world events in ALLURE. Liliana, an Estonian emigrant, reluctantly descends into the world of escorting in order to save her child. A Chinese student in NYC, Jin tries to find a community she can belong to, while her family pressures her to return home. Marta, an illegal Mexican immigrant, works in hotels and restaurants to support her mother. Valerie, a French journalist, who had focused her life on her family, is now trying to get back to her profession, but suddenly struggles with a fading marriage. Interweaving these stories with the background of the global Occupy movement in 2011 New York, ALLURE is a politically charged, powerful drama about the most personal events in our lives.
For more than the last decade, filmmaker Vladan Nikolic has depicted the collision of immigrants and Americans in New York City in extraordinary, whirling, multi-strand narratives. LOVE was a gritty and virtuosic contemporary gangster-like story; ZENITH — which Nikolic directed as “Anonymous” — was a mind-boggling science fiction; ALLURE is a sort of factual-based melodrama.
Vladan Nikolic is a native of Belgrade, Serbia. He worked as a director for the first independent TV Network in the former Yugoslavia. Nikolic has lived in New York City since the 90’s, working as an independent filmmaker, and teaching film at The New School. He was among the digital filmmaking pioneers in the 90's, and taught the first digital filmmaking courses at The New School and at NYU. His films have screened, and have been awarded at, numerous festivals, including Venice, Tribeca, Barcelona, and Geneva.
ALLURE’s representation of different nationalities, races and languages mirrors the global diversity of New York. The eclectic cast includes seasoned international performers, such as Madeleine Assas (from Godard’s For Ever Mozart), Didier Flamand (100+ films, including Wings of Desire, Code Unknown, Les Choristes...), as well as Estonian actress Diana Lotus, Isaach de Bankole’s daughter Aisha de Bankole in her first major film role; featured cameos by the Mexican director Patricia Arriaga, actor/filmmaker and provocateur Caveh Zahedi, and first-time performers and non-actors from over a dozen different countries.
The Los Angeles Times has called Nikolic a “visionary writer-director,” while the New York Times named LOVE an “elegantly directed” critic's pick, and the Village Voice exclaimed “… LOVE gives you hope for the future of independent movies, particularly because Nikolic is also a professor of film at the New School.” Having become something of a “filmmaker’s filmmaker,” Nikolic is well ripe for discovery by others.
Cast and Crew:
Diana Lotus as Liliana
Madeleine Assas as Valerie
Aisha de Bankole as Kasoke
Ying Ying Li as Jin
Julia Konrad Viezzer as Marta
Didier Flamand as Jean
Patricia Arriaga as Mariana
Caveh Zahedi as The Professor
ALLURE. Starring Diana Lotus, Madeleine Assas, Aisha de Bankole, Ying Ying Li, Julia Konrad Viezzer, Didier Flamand, Patricia Arriaga, Caveh Zahedi. Concept, Story, Direction, and Editing by Vladan Nikolic. Produced by Vladan Nikolic, Aleksandar Kostic. Executive Producer: Eric Werthman. Director of Photography: Aleksandar Kostic. Second Camera: Colin Nusbaum. Production Design: Marija Plavsic-Kostic. Sound Design by Jacob Subotnick. Sound Mix Christ Stangroom, Hobo Audio. Music by Yves Dharamraj. Produced by Kostic Films and Surla Films.