Tag Archives: Czech

Sun, Hay and Strawberries / Slunce, seno, jahody (1983) Zdenek Troska, Pavel Kikincuk, Bronek Cerny, Veronika Kánská, Comedy

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Slunce, seno, jahody is a very successful Czech comedy film made in 1984, usually regarded as one of the classics of the Czech comedy industry. It was filmed and set in Hoštice, a small rural village in the Czech portion of the former Czechoslovakia. It is a play on the perceived stereotypes of daily life in a village community.

A Czech agricultural student, Šimon Pláni?ka, arrives at the small South Bohemian town of Hoštice, and joins the local JZD (agricultural co-op) with the intention of trying out his experiment regarding the “Milk yield of cows in regards to a cultured environment”. He runs into difficulty with the directorship of the JZD, but he finds them eager to help once they hear he’s the son of the local agricultural commissioner, as his last name is also Pláni?ka. Blažena Škopková is given the task of finding out how things are looking. However everything is complicated by the jealousy of Blažena’s boyfriend Venca.

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Slumming (2006) Michael Glawogger, Paulus Manker, August Diehl, Michael Ostrowski, Comedy, Drama

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Rich slacker Sebastian has little respect for others, especially not women. Riding on his good looks and charm, he easily manipulates people, like his flatmate Alex. He enjoys playing with others; sometimes casually, sometimes cruelly, changing their lives.

Sebastian’s favorite sport is slumming in Vienna’s seedy bars and cafés in search of quirky characters to toy with. He also likes surfing for young women over the internet, seducing them with elaborate stories of truth, half-truth and lies. Grade school teacher Pia is his latest conquest. Or maybe this wallflower who talks too much when she’s nervous has actually conquered him?

Their romance is jeopardized when Pia becomes angry about Sebastian’s latest act of flippant cruelty: just for fun, he and Alex picked up an unconscious drunk off the street and drove him to the Czech Republic, where they dumped him without any ID.

Pia decides to rescue this man, Kallman, a down and out poet whose drinking binges usually result in ranting and raving and aggressive attempts to sell his poems on the street. Little does he know, he’s about to have a moment of sudden revelation, lost and alone in the wintry Czech wildnerness…

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Post coitum (2004) Juraj Jakubisko, Franco Nero, Eva Elsnerová, Richard Krajco, Comedy

Post coitum (2004)
“Post Coitum” is a sex tragicomedy. There are five women and four men, who are very unsatisfied with life. They have casual sex which causes them to be more unhappy. All of the characters literally hook up and switch partners unknowingly. There’s an aged hippie photographer (Franco Nero), the sweet virgin, a prostitute, an egotistical record producer and his humble wife, a married couple, a rock star and other assortment of Felliniesque characters.”Post Coitum” is like an erotic slapstick version of “Magnolia”, as filmed by Fellini.

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Transport z raje / Transport From Paradise (1963) Zbynek Brynych, Zdenek Stepánek, Ilja Prachar, Jirí Vrstála, Drama, War

Transport From Paradise (1963)
Transport from Paradise is set in an unusual World War II concentration camp. The lax Nazi guards permit their Jewish prisoners to roam freely about the camp and conduct their own business and social affairs, without the threat of instant extermination looming over their heads. The prisoners’ main fear is that they may at any moment be shipped off to one of the death camps. In the film’s incredibly heartbreaking climax, a group of prisoners willingly board a train to Auschwitz, laboring under the delusion that they are being sent to another “paradise” camp at the behest of the Council of Jewish Elders.

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Lepsie byt bohaty a zdravy ako chudobny a chory / It’s Better to Be Wealthy and Healthy Than Poor and Ill (1992) Juraj Jakubisko, Deana Horváthová, Dagmar Havlová, Juraj Kukura, Comedy, Drama

Lepsie byt bohaty a zdravy ako chudobny a chory (1992)
In a tone of bitter comedy, the director portrays the confusion that ensued the fall of the Soviet bloc and the split of the former Socialist Republic of Czechoslovakia into two independent states (the Czechs and Slovaks one side on the other), where some characters who thrived in mediocrity enrich suddenly taking advantage of the chaos. With his film, Jakubisko predicted growth of irrational nationalism in Eastern Europe and the dismantling of the Czechoslovak Federation.

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…a páty jezdec je Strach / …and the Fifth Horseman Is Fear (1965) Zbynek Brynych, Miroslav Machácek, Olga Scheinpflugová, Zdenka Procházková, Drama, War

a paty jezdec je Strach (1965)
Dr. Braun is forbidden to practice medicine because he’s a Jew living in Nazi occupied Czechoslovakia. He’s old, seems resigned about the fate of the Jews, and even works in the Department of Confiscation of Jewish Property. One day a neighbor asks him to assist a wounded political fugitive. Dr. Braun reluctantly operates to remove the bullet, but warns that plenty of morphine will soon be needed in order to keep the man from screaming when he awakes, which would attract unwanted attention. After some soul searching, Dr. Braun decides to redeem himself and reclaim his identify as a person and doctor by continuing to provide assistance. His search for the scarce morphine takes him on a nightmarish journey which includes a brothel where local women are forced to be prostitutes for German soldiers, a bar where the locals try to drown their misery in booze and dancing, and a Jewish insane asylum with a high suicide rate. Meanwhile, in a world where there is constant propaganda instructing…

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