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All My Compatriots (1969)

Vsichni dobrí rodáci (original title)
Various scenes in the life of a tight-knit community in Czechoslovakia exploring the human spirit in the backdrop of the political changes that they experience.

Director:

Vojtech Jasný

Writer:

Vojtech Jasný
Reviews
3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Vlastimil Brodský ... Ocenás
Radoslav Brzobohatý ... Frantisek
Vladimír Mensík ... Jorka
Waldemar Matuska ... Zásinek
Drahomíra Hofmanová Drahomíra Hofmanová ... Merry Widow
Pavel Pavlovský ... Bertin
Václav Babka ... Franta Lampa
Josef Hlinomaz ... Frajz
Karel Augusta ... Joza Trna
Ilja Prachar ... Plécmera (as I. Prachar)
Václav Lohniský ... Zejvala (as V. Lohnisky)
Jirí Tomek ... (as J. Tomek)
Vera Galatíková ... Frantisek's wife (as V. Galatíková)
Helena Ruzicková ... Bozka (as H. Ruzicková)
Oldrich Velen ... Policeman (as O. Velen)
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Storyline

Stories about seven friends in a small Moravian village following the socialization of Czechoslovakia in 1948, developing gradually into the story of Frantiek, the resister. The film offers some direct political criticism, particularly of the process of collectivizing agriculture. After the 1968 Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia, it was promptly banned. Written by Anonymous

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Plot Keywords:

czech new wave | See All (1) »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

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Details

Country:

Czechoslovakia

Language:

Czech

Release Date:

4 April 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

All My Compatriots See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jirina Bohdalová and Iva Janzurová were considered for the part of Merry Widow, eventually played by Drahomíra Hofmanová. See more »

Connections

Featured in Predcasná úmrtí: Nespoutaný zivel (2002) See more »

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User Reviews

 
an ardent reportage of its locus and time
21 June 2017 | by lasttimeisawSee all my reviews

Possibly the most famous work of the nonagenarian Czech filmmaker Vojtech Jasný, ALL MY COMPATRIOTS is a trenchant allegory of life under the Communist regime, shot with sublime bucolic élan and fairly won him the BEST DIRECTOR honor in Cannes.

Inhabited in an idyllic Moravian village, this close-knit community Jasný rounds up is particularly male-oriented, a patriarchal microcosm where the fate of ordinary lives is steered by an intangible hand. From the film's time span (1945 to 1958), inhabitants are divided by political views, tormented by past deeds, succumbed to ludicrous idiocy or outrageous hatred, united behind one good guy but also crumbled when things become menacing. Overall, Jasný manages to flesh out a vivid smorgasbord of characters living under shifting sands with none-too-heavy-handed snippets center on their objects: a four-square peasant (Brzobohatý, full of fortitude), a shifty photographer, a guilt-ridden drunkard (Matuska, strikingly entrancing), a displaced organist, a cleft-lipped thief, an ill-fated postman among others; whereas in the petticoat front, we have a running gag of a jinxed merry widow, whoever dares to court her would be pretty soon pushing up daisies.

But, the film's strength and value does not reside in the circumspect plot construction, because Jasný doesn't offer a rounded inspection of the state of affairs, most of the time, audience are passive witnesses of the unjust happenings but barring from peering into the machinations behind those (Communist) persecutors and connivers (they are all schematically depicted as surly pawns), thus it manifests that Jasný's standing point might not be entirely objective, it has Jasný's autobiographic influence notwithstanding, but no more a convincing censure of the regime than a frank rumination of an existential philosophy and his unbiased view of the hoi-polloi (both affectionate and matter-of-fact).

Actually what makes this film a marvel to any new audience is its ethnographic portrait of the place and its people, Jasný has an extremely keen eye on faces and lights, the portraitures he captures are magnificent to say the very least (particularly the furrowed visages of the elderly), and sonically, its nostalgic soundtrack (organ pieces, lyrical strains) and diegetic music sequences serve as excellent ballast to those indelible images, somehow, the film is sublimed itself into something might surpass even Jasný's intention, something should be enshrined as an ardent reportage of its locus and time, a deathless enterprise finds its solid toehold amongst a vastly manifold Czechoslovakian cinema.


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