6.7/10
1,204
4 user 66 critic

Alois Nebel (2011)

A train dispatcher encounters a mute stranger who appears out of nowhere, and finds himself mysteriously involved with a murder in Poland.

Director:

Writers:

(concept), (concept) (as Jaromír 99)
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4 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Alois Nebel
...
Kveta
...
Nemý
...
Wachek
...
Starý Wachek
...
Dorothe
Ján Sedal ...
Výcepní Sokin
Miloslav Marsálek ...
Strojvudce
Jirí Strébl ...
Ruský Dustojník
...
Psychiatr
...
Sestricka
...
Esenbák
...
Esenbák
Thomas Zielinski ...
Zrízenec
...
Polský Kriminalista
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Storyline

Set in 1989 at the end of the Communist era even as the Berlin Wall was falling, a humble train dispatcher who's lived all his life in a small hamlet on the Czech side of the Czech-Polish border has been tormented by disturbing dreams about what happened to his ethnic German babysitter at the end of WW II. At the same time, a strange man of few to no words (is he mute?) in his mid 40s, shows up in the small hamlet with an old photograph and an ax. Much ensues... Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Animation | Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

| |

Release Date:

29 September 2011 (Czech Republic)  »

Also Known As:

Aloïs Nebel  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

€2,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

CZK 1,469,970 (Czech Republic) (2 October 2011)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Czech Republic's official submission to the Best Foreign Language Film category of the 84th Academy Awards 2012. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Kafe s Jolanou: Miroslav Krobot (2017) See more »

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User Reviews

Nocturne about detachment
1 December 2014 | by (Greece) – See all my reviews

This is characteristically Czech, that worldview shaped by centuries of being tossed from the sphere of one empire to the other and being unable to do more than watch; this watching is usually a whimsy or a mute sadness in Czech films. From this view flows a disenchantment with power as well as morals and narrative, a disenchantment that powers a lot of the life of representation over there, from independent- minded cinema right down to porn.

Painting instead of chronicle. The film is actually both, the chronicle a series of moods about detachment from the world, centered on a weary station master in a remote post in the mountains who can only watch as night rolls down on the passing of things. There's smuggling going on to and from the border, this is how the activities of men are rendered here, as superficial schemes of an uninteresting importance. He is soon fired, takes his watching down to the city where no one cares. The backdrop is the fall of communism around the Bloc but this too reaches us as faint echoes from a TV or radio, there's no motivation for political discourse in any of this, only distance and disenchantment.

This is the treatise, about this man who can wander away from it all as passively as he sat and watched the machinations and how this nearly costs him the one prospect left for love. It's not terribly interesting, the detachment as weariness more than space for reflection.

The sketch is a bit more so, that's where the film derives a lot of its power from. It's an animated film, though it seems real people and locations were used for their nuance as the backdrop to sketch over. The animation is basically a shorthand here that lets the makers accentuate moods with a softer distance that you really have to strive to create with the camera. It worked for me, the dark mountains, the mud, the thankless vodka around a table with strangers, it seeps into the bones with the rain and chills.


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