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 »
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 »
Over 2000 years ago, the 12 Apostles of Christ were warned that one day Satan would retaliate against God, for casting he and his Angels into hell, so the Apostles each made a special ... See full summary »
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.
See more »
This film is hypnotic. The soothing voice of the lead character, coming out of his cherubic always sweetly smiling face, almost lulls the viewer into a serene calm--if not for the fact that we know in our guts that this is the calm a cobra induces in its prey before the kill. This is, after all, Czechoslovakia on the eve of being taken over by Hitler, and the main character runs a crematorium. We know what is coming next. And yet, we cannot take our eyes from the screen; we are filled with foreboding.
Like the best of Fellini, the director, Juraj Herz, frames virtually every scene perfectly; a collection of stills taken from this black-and-white masterpiece could fill a photographic art gallery with a distinguished collection indeed.
How could the holocaust ever have happened in the middle of the most "civilized" culture in the world, the cradle of elegant music? How could rational "civilized" human beings have abetted this monstrosity? This film provides a fable that can help us answer these most important questions. But do not think this movie is some boring treatise on the banal roots of evil. It is a very entertaining horror film that will keep you spellbound.
28 of 32 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?