A factory manager in rural Czechoslovakia bargains with the army to send men to the area, to boost the morale of his young female workers, deprived of male company since the local boys have... See full summary »
Two closely related episodes. Youths make problems for two local orchestras about to compete nationally, and in a talent competition a young girl gets stage fright, while another lies to her boss to compete.
Unable to deal with her parents, Jeannie Tyne runs away from home. Larry and Lyne Tyne search for her, and in the process meet other people whose children ran away. With their children gone... See full summary »
France before 1789: When a widow hears that her lover is to marry her cousin's daughter, she asks the playboy Valmont to take the girl's virginity. But first she bets him, with her body as prize, to seduce a virtuous, young, married woman.
Eight acclaimed filmmakers bring their unique and differing perspectives to the 1972 Summer Olympic Games held in Munich. The segments include Claude Lelouch's take on Olympic losers and ... See full summary »
Claude Bukowski leaves the family ranch in Oklahoma for New York where he is rapidly embraced into the hippie group of youngsters led by Berger, yet he's already been drafted. He soon falls in love with Sheila Franklin, a rich girl but still a rebel inside.
One of the most important images of the Czech New Wave 60s, which was ranked among the top ten domestic films of all time. Feature debut screenwriter and director Ivan Passer is currently ... See full summary »
Petr is 17 years old and starts work as a security worker against shoplifting in a busy self-service shop. His boss gives him pretty basic instructions, and Petr is pretty unsuccessful at work. He doesn't do much better at the dance hall either, and at home his bombastic father lectures him about how useless he is.Written by
Hazel Freeman <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This brought to mind CLOSELY WATCHED TRAINS, another early Czech New Wave film about a teenage apprentice who's none too excited about his work. Both are coming-of-age comedies with some moments of awkward teen romance. This film (Forman's first feature) actually predates Menzel's, and has more of a freeform, anecdotal structure. Although not explicitly a commentary on Communism, Petr's distaste for spying on customers clearly has some political implications. The film has a gentle, naturalistic pace with scenes that have a nice attention to detail. Ladislav Jakim struck me as a fine young actor, and I liked how the rival boy gradually developed into a more sympathetic character (particularly during the dance scene, which was my favorite part of the movie). Jan Vostrcil, the wonderful lead in Firemen's Ball, perhaps lays it on a little thick as the overbearing father, but it's a somewhat humorous performance. Although the comedy is quite mellow and subdued, there are a few laugh out loud moments. Unfortunately, the Facets DVD sports an ugly transfer, and woefully incomplete subtitles. Entire swaths of dialogue went by without translation.
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