An allegory set in an archetypal Czech village, it tells of what happens when a sequence of mysterious events take place, including the disappearance of the stationmaster. While everything has a rational explanation, collective paranoia takes hold and everyone’s worst instincts are released. Interrogations, the abolition of rights and the search for scapegoats ultimately lead to murder
Tag Archives: Czech
Údolí vcel / The Valley of the Bees (1968) Frantisek Vlácil, Petr Cepek, Jan Kacer, Vera Galatíková, Drama, History
Ondrej, a young boy who loves bees and bats, is introduced to his new mother, a woman much younger than his father. He brings her a basketful of flowers which she starts to throw in the air and then gives out a shriek, as she discovers several bats in the bottom of the bowl. In a rage, Ondrej’s father picks the boy up and hurls him against the wall. As the boy lays on the ground paralyzed the father promises the Holy Virgin to dedicate the boy to her if she spares his life. Ondrej survives and is raised in a strict Knightly Order, where he is mentored by a devout monk, Armin. But one day, an extraordinary event makes him doubt the Order and remember where he came from.
Tisícrocná vcela / The Millennial Bee (1983) Juraj Jakubisko, Jozef Kroner, Stefan Kvietik, Michal Docolomanský, Comedy, Drama, War
A historic mega-film, one family saga, three generations (1887 -1917) assimilated to the bee community in the hive. The queen bee serves as a big mother that symbolizes the family and national roots, the power and meaning of tradition and the return to it. The mosaic of the bricklaying Pichanda family’s lives is made of love, hope, hard work, human understanding and also the tragedies of economic crisis, war and human malice. Dreams, symbols, and life in all its forms create a colored rainbow spanning from birth to death and from mystery to reality and back.
Slnko v sieti / The Sun in a Net (1962) Stefan Uher, Marián Bielik, Jana Beláková, Olga Salagová, Drama
Oldrich “Fajolo” Fajták (Marián Bielik), a student who directs quasi-existentialist verbal abuse at his girlfriend Bela Blazejová (Jana Beláková), takes off to a formally volunteer summer work camp at a farm where he meets her grandfather.
A narration of episodes from the life of the famous Czech poet, Karel Hynek Mácha. Throughout the film, we witness a deep analysis of Mácha’s complex character (his relation to another Czech writer of the time Josef Kajetán Tyl, his unbearable jealousy, his solitude, his attitude to nature,etc.) on the well-depicted historical background with all its particularities.
Tale Bozena Nemcova served as a template for a romantic story about a courageous, self-made girl scorned daughter of a shepherd, who is not afraid of anything – neither night nor swim. But the superstitious villagers about her telling all sorts of strange things, even seeking union with the powers of hell. Bold and courageous Bara stupid prejudices of their fellow men almost suffer. Energetic girl brings her pieces to boil the whole village.
Skola otcu / School for Fathers (1957) Ladislav Helge, Karel Höger, Blazena Holisová, Josef Mixa, Drama
A new teacher with high standards and a strong sense of duty replaces an easy grader. Once bad grades begin to pile up, a product of his predecessor’s subservience to the system, the new teacher has to stand up for himself and his students.
Král Sumavy / King of Sumava (1959) Karel Kachyna, Radovan Lukavský, Jirí Vala, Jirina Svorcová, Crime, Drama
Slavnosti snezenek / The Snowdrop Festival (1984) Jirí Menzel, Rudolf Hrusínský, Jaromír Hanzlík, Josef Somr, Comedy
This movie is based on texts of Bohumil Hrabal, world-known Czech prosaic. It’s a story (in a form of a mosaic of short episodes and pictures) about the sadness and happiness of inhabitants of Kersko (Kersko is a small woody area full of cottages and roods). These people are both simple and sensitive, they have their own pleasures (e.g. Leli is a collector of cheap, but inutile things) and the greatest delight of all of them is a hunting. Crude poetics of amateur hunting is screened by dreamy pictures of this area. Menzel mixes sentimental lyricism and rough (but not vulgar!) humor and the outcome is the never-ending landscape of continuous life in the proximate nearness of nature.
Panna zázracnica / The Wonder-Maid (1967) Stefan Uher, Jolanta Umecka, Ladislav Mrkvicka, Otakar Janda, Comedy, Drama, Mystery
Anabella, a beautiful young woman meets a group of artists. They will awaken your erotic desires but also pure feeling of love; becomes the object of his secret fantasies but also in their artistic inspiration.