7.9/10
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3 user 23 critic

Valley of the Bees (1968)

Údolí vcel (original title)
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 »

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(screenplay), (story) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Petr Cepek ...
Ondrej
Jan Kacer ...
Armin von Heide
Vera Galatíková ...
Lenora
Zdenek Kryzánek ...
Lord of Vlkov
Miroslav Machácek ...
Brown Friar
Josef Somr ...
Rotgier
Václav Kotva ...
Farmer
Jana Hlavácková ...
Blind Girl
Frantisek Kovárík ...
Shepherd
Josef Kotapis ...
A Collier
Petr Sedlák ...
A Collier
Ludvík Volf ...
Ladislav Gzela ...
Jakub
Petr Stepánek ...
Markvart
Michal Kozuch ...
Blasius
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Storyline

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. Written by poco loco, pethr

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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male nudity | bats | monk | bee | widow | See All (16) »

Genres:

Drama | History

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Details

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Release Date:

17 May 1968 (Czechoslovakia)  »

Also Known As:

The Valley of the Bees  »

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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User Reviews

 
The Middle Ages Come to Life
22 October 2002 | by (Washington, DC) – See all my reviews

This is, without a doubt, one of the finest films I have ever seen. It works so well on so many levels. It is a religious drama, an historical drama and a darn good yarn. The acting is first-rate throughout and the cinematography and music are breathtaking in their beauty. Vlacik had an obvious fondness for deep poetic and metaphysical image and story-telling. But, he also had a gift for sheer drama. There are many shocking moments that almost take your breath away. You really feel you are in the Middle Ages with all of its existential isolation and horror.

The previous reviewer describes the film fairly well so I will not get into the actual story. But if you have a chance to see this film at a film festival, see this film. This film is as good as the best of Kurosawa, Rivette, Bergman, Angelopoulos etc. 10 points out of 10.


52 of 56 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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