Since the arrival of the new teacher, Maria Drazdechova, to a Bratislava suburban school in the year of 1983, life has turned upside down for students and parents. The teacher's corrupted ...
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Since the arrival of the new teacher, Maria Drazdechova, to a Bratislava suburban school in the year of 1983, life has turned upside down for students and parents. The teacher's corrupted behavior and one of the students' suicide attempt that could be related to that matter, makes the school Principal call the students' parents for an urgent meeting that will suddenly put the future of all the families at stake. They are asked to sign a petition to move Miss Drazdechova out of the school. The teacher's high connections within the Communist Party makes everyone feel threatened, but at this point they have no choice but to make a decision: will they dare to go against Miss Drazdechova and stand up for what they believe in at any risk, or will they just remain silent and let things be? Written by
Set in 1983 in a Slovakian school, this is a powerful and dialogue driven Czech film directed by Jan Hrebejk and written by Petr Jarchovsky. During this era, the nation was entrenched in the Soviet Union's Communist orbit.
Zuzana Maurery is superb portraying the imperious and rather despicable teacher Maria Drazdechova, who uses her position of Party Chairwoman at the school to manipulate parents and students into doing all sorts of favors for her. If they refuse, she makes sure they are harassed and given poor grades, while those who cooperate are protected and given high marks.
When a rather tragic incident occurs with one of the harassed students, a meeting is called for all parents in the teacher's class to try and investigate what exactly is happening. Often told through flashbacks, we begin to see the web Drazdechova has spun here. The supporting cast , too numerous to mention, are truly excellent here, as well, with most naturalistic performances. It will all lead to a highly dramatic conclusion.
All in all, I thought this was a move that was very well acted, directed, and written, so if you like cerebral and intense foreign dramas you may very well like this one.
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