The time is the seventeenth century. The beggar Maryna Schuchová hides the Host in her scarf at the Communion. She admits to the parish priest Schmidt that she intended to give it to the midwife Groerová to heal her ailing cow. The young priest declares her a witch and convinces the Sumperk countess De Galle to summon the inquisitor Boblig from Edelstadt. This failed student of law sees the offer as a great opportunity. He uses torture and threats to force the women from the to testify to their meetings with the devil and learn by heart the lies he has made up for the inquisition tribunal. Boblig accuses the wealthy burghers of witchcraft as well, and so wants to seize their possessions.Written by
Due to a very impressive image of the atmosphere of fear and compulsory confessions that resembled the Stalinist methods of the communist regime of the 1950s, the film was removed from hire and appeared on television screens only after 1989. See more »
The violin (string instruments) scene of the oligarchs when the maid watches is off timing so much it creates humorous empathy where a romantic emphasis is the focus. Considering the serious nature of the film this was not intended and a lapse in production quality. See more »
I've seen many movies about the persecution of witches in medieval times, but this one rightly stands on top of that pile, surpassing even peer masterpieces "Mark of the Devil" and "Witchfinder General". The cinematography is gorgeous, the writing is smart and sophisticated, the performances are excellent, and the story itself is gut-wrenching and brutal. Rarely do horror films haunt my mind like this Czech production did. With its roots based in historical fact, the true evils of mankind certainly are much more diabolical than any conjured up monster or serial killer. It is quite an experience to watch a movie that is simultaneously, strikingly, so beautiful and yet so harrowing.
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