Excellent stop-motion animation film from one of the best Czech filmmakers, Jirí Trnka. It tells the ancient story of Bohemia, how it was founded by Czech, the Forefather, and a series of ...
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Excellent stop-motion animation film from one of the best Czech filmmakers, Jirí Trnka. It tells the ancient story of Bohemia, how it was founded by Czech, the Forefather, and a series of legendary episodes of heroes, queens and kings, inspired in a book by Alois Jirásek compiling the Czech myths.Written by
The film was remastered in 2015-2016 as part of the Pilsen European cultural capital of 2015 event. See more »
Hard to sit through.
My curiosity about Czech folklore, my love of stop-motion animation, and my interest in film history weren't enough to sustain me through Old Czech Legends.
Tnka was an animation pioneer, like Winsor McCay or Ub Iwerks, and like many such pioneers his work has all kinds of problems that later animators, following his lead, would go on to solve. The images are dark, ugly, and often indecipherable; the movement of both the puppets and the camera is jerky and awkward, and the plots manage to be both uninterestingly simple and difficult to follow.
I'd never want to diminish the enjoyment others find in Old Czech Legends, but I found it to be a labor to sit through. The music, which is initially appealing, becomes overwhelming and adds to the movie's overall feeling of chaos.
I'm a huge Svankmajer fan and love the early papercut animation of Michel Ocelot. Old Czech Legends, meanwhile, reminded me of the stop-motion Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer short that used to be televised every winter - never a favorite of mine - minus the simple, accessible plot.
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