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Another Czechoslovak gem, 21 June 2006

I too remember this film from my childhood. Another Czechoslovak gem, just like Three Gifts for Cinderella (Tri Orisky pro Popelku) that was a frequent part of my boyhood holidays. In Britain it was split into a 3 part series and narrated, and called either The Train to Heaven or The Train to Station Heaven (as in the Czech title). My memory of it is hazy now, just a whirl of strange moments....snowy landscapes, a headless horseman, the girl having her long hair cut, boys picking their way over railway tracks....God knows what it was all about but I remember enjoying it as a child and it obviously made an impression. I would love to see it again if it were released on DVD/VHS.

40 out of 43 people found the following review useful:
lasting impression, 9 November 2004

It was interesting to read another viewer's comments about this film. I have seen Schindler's List and it didn't touch me anywhere near as deeply as Escape from Sobibor. I first watched it in my teens and it was this film, more than anything I'd seen previously about the Holocaust, which had the greatest impact. The story, of course, is based on truth and is full of painful, heart-wrenching scenes. Nothing has ever presented the Holocaust to me in a more vivid, more graphic, more powerful way.

It's amusing that some people can watch a film and it barely registers with them. Others can see the same film and have a completely different reaction to the experience. But that's people for you, the great variety that is the spice of life. For me, Escape from Sobibor was a very emotional experience and it had a major impact on me. But don't take anyone else's word for it. We all see things differently - go and see it yourself.

3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
one of the best childhood TV memories, 11 October 2004

I couldn't believe it (and still can't really) that I now actually own this DVD. Until last month the last time Id seen this was way back in 1980 when it was last screened on BBC 1.

It was one of my absolute favourite programmes from my childhood, largely on account of the enchanting locations, exotic(!) language and beautiful and memorable music. This film is what inspired me to become interested in foreign languages, different cultures and in particular the countries of Central and Eastern Europe.

No one has yet commented or perhaps realized that in Britain this film was neither called Three Wishes nor Three Hazelnuts for Cinderella but here it was screened in 3 episodes several times through the 70s as Three GIFTS for Cinderella and the music which was used as the main theme was the famous rousing score that accompanies scenes of the royal procession heading for the palace after meeting with Cinderella's stepmother. Instead of subtitles it was narrated.

Watching it as an adult it lives up to all my memories but exceeds them because I can appreciate the film so much more...the acting, directing, Cinderella's character as equal, if not superior, to the boys etc.

Having watched it now I found it strange to reflect that the young actors who played some of the main parts are now in their late 50s already. Amazing how much time has passed. I was shocked to find that one of these actors, the young man who played Vitek (Jaroslav Drbohlav) died only 12 years after making the film at the age of 38. Seems so tragic. Does anyone know how he died so young?

Where exactly was the location for this film? I've heard in East Germany but where precisely? What's the name of the castle we see at the end of part one (sorry, I'm still thinking of it as the three-parter it used to be in Britain)?

The only thing I don't like about the film is the ending, which was never shown here. The final part of Three Gifts for Cinderella ended when the Prince lifted up Cinderella in the courtyard and men in the crowd threw their hats into the air as they cheered. That was it, and to my mind it worked better than the incredibly overlong sequence of Cinders and the Prince riding over the snowy brow of a hill leaving us staring at a not particularly interestingly framed shot of the sky and a lone cloud for what seems like 10 minutes. I would also, at the risk of offending Karel Gott fans, have preferred the end music either to have been the same as the opening music or the processional tune which was, as I said earlier, the theme music used for all three parts of Three Gifts for Cinderella (except for the beginning of part one which opened as the film does). All in all though, one of my all-time favourites...still!

"Kizzy" (1976)
17 out of 17 people found the following review useful:
how can I get to see this again?, 3 September 2004

Great story from my childhood and I would love to see it again along with a load of other fondly remembered TV programmes. Very disappointed and nonplussed as to why it (and other programmes) are not available to buy. Anyone know of a way of getting hold of a copy of Kizzy? Also The Phoenix and the Carpet, The Peppermint Pig, The Changes, Touch and Go, The Singing Ringing Tree.....I could go on and on.....

Kizzy itself was one of those programmes that everyone seemed to watch and most still remember. It was a strong story about alienation, prejudice and bullying that is surely as topical now as it was then. I remember it being well-made and acted, it certainly made a great impression on me, but of course without access to a copy of it that evaluation must go unchecked. If it is the case that none or few of these programmes are available to buy, then I'm amazed that the BBC or, ITV for the occasional classic it managed to muster, have failed to see the financial potential of releasing them for nostalgia junkies like me to buy.