Birth: 24. 6. 1940., Štip, Makedonija
Krelja is one of the leading documentary makers and a renowned film critic from the generation of the so-called Hitchcock followers (promoters of auteur criticism). For many years, he worked as a film editor on the first program of Croatian radio (formerly Radio Zagreb). He studied comparative literature at the University of Philosophy in Zagreb, and has been working in film since the end of the 60’s. In the 70’s he established himself as the author of emotionally engaging documentaries about society’s "outsiders", especially children and young adults (e.g. Povratak, 1975; Prihvatna stanica, 1977). Also notable is his work about unusual social and psychological phenomena (e.g. Ponude pod broj..., 1969; Coprnice, 1971) as well as his socially critical films (Recital, 1972; Splendid Isolation, 1973). In the 90’s, faced with the consequences of war in Croatia, he often portrayed the destinies of war exiles and victims (e.g. Zoran Šipuš i njegova Jasna, 1992; Suzanin osmjeh, 1993). The same theme is present in the documentary omnibus Hrvatski triptih (1993, director of two episodes, while the third was directed by Edi Mudronja). Another valuable documentary is Kovačica/Ljubičin dar (1991) about a naïve painter. His most famous feature film is Vlakom prema jugu (1981), a comedy about the inhabitants of an apartment building in Novi Zagreb, relying on the tradition of Krešo Golik. He was the editor and writer of the text in the monograph Golik (1997).
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