A rare and insightful glimpse into the early negotiation stages of dispute resolution between Serbia and Kosovo.

With a giveaway title, it is clear that it is not the result we have to focus on when watching ‘The Agreement’. Observing the settlement process between Serbian and Kosovan parties, it is much more fascinating how personality traits and psychological warfare influence the dynamics of diplomatic talks. All the hauteur, coupled with a decisive lack of willingness to cooperate with one another both on a national and on a personal level, sets a tense tone for this documentary.

While it is nearly impossible to side with any of the negotiating parties, we learn much from the unbiased approach of EU Chief Negotiator Robert Cooper. As he leads the settlement talks, Mr Cooper gives utterance to many of our outsider concerns. In line with the building tensions in the conference room, his remarks imply a seasoned leader who cannot accept courtroom manoeuvres over the interests of civilians.

Using balanced screen time and personal interviews along with recordings of the negotiation process, Poulsen’s first attempt in documentary manages to leave room for debate and diverse interpretation of one of the most formative events of recent EU history.

Karen Stokkendal Poulsen
Vibeke Vogel
Sturla Brandth Grøvlen
Lars Skree
Balthazar Hertel
Robert Cooper
Edita Tahiri
Borko Stefanovic
Original Format