Kopfrkingl enjoys his job at a crematorium in Czechoslovakia in the late 1930s. He likes reading the Tibetan book of the dead, and espouses the view that cremation relieves earthly ... See full summary »
Husband (senior ministry official) and wife find their house is riddled with listening devices put there by his own ministry. A harrowing night follows (reminiscent of 'Who's Afraid Of ... See full summary »
Diamonds in the night is the tense, brutal story of two Jewish boys who escape from a train transporting them from one concentration camp to another. Ultimately, they are hunted down by a ... See full summary »
A more horrific and gloomy version of The Beauty and the Beast. Julie is a bankrupt merchant's daughter who as the only one of the three daughters chooses to save her father's life by going... See full summary »
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... See full summary »
Middle-aged Antonin and his friends, the major, now retired, and the canon, are in the river, swimming and philosophizing. Then it starts to rain. It just seems to be that sort of summer. ... See full summary »
Distinguished by being "banned forever" in its native Czech Republic, Jan Nemec's "A Report on the Party" is a great film from the flowering of the Czech cinema in the 1960s. It is a ... See full summary »
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.
Kopfrkingl enjoys his job at a crematorium in Czechoslovakia in the late 1930s. He likes reading the Tibetan book of the dead, and espouses the view that cremation relieves earthly suffering. At a reception, he meets Reineke, with whom he fought for Austria in the first World War. Reineke convinces Kopfrkingl to emphasize his supposedly German heritage, including sending his timid son to the German school. Reineke then suggests that Kopfrkingl's half-Jewish wife is holding back his advancement in his job. Written by
Czechoslovakia's official submission to 42nd Academy Award's Foreign Language in 1970. See more »
My sweet. This is the blessed spot where we met 17 years ago. Only the leopard is new. Kind nature long ago relieved the other of his shackles. You see, dear, I keep talking of nature's benevolence, of merciful fate, of the kindness of God. We judge and criticize others, rebuke them. But what about ourselves? I always have the feeling that I do so little for you.
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"The Cremator" is a once "lost" film from the Prague Spring. An exquisite evisceration of fascism, desire and all things political, the film was hidden in the vaults of FAMU (the Prague Film Academy) as an agricultural film (along with many others) after the Soviet tanks rolled in. "The Cremator" was revealed to the world in pristine condition and with force only a few years ago, and its message is for today. Absurd, frightening and beautiful - the film reminds me not so much of its 1930's, pre-Nazi setting as today's America.
Kafka is never far from "The Cremator" - the central character evokes "The Trial" from the point of view of a willful bureaucrat rather Joseph K., and therein lies its power and clarity: what if we agreed to willful ignorance and xenophobia simply to get ahead and be accepted? Errol Morris's "Mr. Death" is the only Western Film that comes close to examining this issue - "The Cremator" goes deep into the heart of the very human mechanism that made the Holocaust possible - perhaps inevitable, given the forces at play. This is a dark and important film.
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