is a movie starring
Matthias Brandt, Jan Budar, and David Czesany.
A Czech journalist joins a Prague radio station that broadcasts Nazi propaganda in order to protect his Jewish wife. However, as the Nazi rule over Czechoslovakia calls for more and more ...
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Petr, youthful, quiet, and sensitive, comes from Prague to teach natural science in a country town. The gruff principal asks what he's running from and predicts he'll be gone in six months.... See full summary »
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The documentary recounts the epic of Vincennes Experimental University Center, from its creation after the events of May 68 until its demolition in the summer of 1980. To talk about ... See full summary »
"THE TRAP" is a modern film noir reflecting the true face of Serbian (Eastern European) 'society in transition.' It's a story that could happen to you. It is a film about an ordinary man, ... See full summary »
After her husband's death, Hana lives on alone in the family villa. Her two sons visit her with their families, but these visits frequently end in quarrels. When Hana meets Brona, a hardy ... See full summary »
A Czech journalist joins a Prague radio station that broadcasts Nazi propaganda in order to protect his Jewish wife. However, as the Nazi rule over Czechoslovakia calls for more and more collaboration, his relationship with his wife spirals downward.Written by
"Protektor" is one of the most unusual Holocaust movies I've seen. For starters, it takes a playful attitude--not quite dark humor but definitely quirky--with its plinky soundtrack (much of the music consists of a single staccato chord thrown in a scene) and with an odd fixation on bicycles. But what makes it really unusual is the complex, imperfect characters who serve as the protagonists.
The story spans 1938-1942 during the Czech occupation by Nazis. Our heroes are Hana, a Jewish movie star, and her husband Emil, a radio announcer who is not Jewish. Right at the outset we see that their marriage is not ideal. Emil is violently jealous of her flirtations (and possible infidelity) with other men while he himself gets involved with indiscretions with other women. I did not find either character particularly likeable, and this may have been deliberate on the part of the director. What follows once the Nazis take over is a slow escalating tension as Emil fraternizes with Nazis, supposedly to ensure is wife's protection but possibly also to further his selfish interests. Meanwhile Hana begins sneaking around with a mysterious young man who photographs her doing illegal things, flaunting her rebellion toward the Nazis.
So you see, it's not your standard Jewish victim vs. Nazi bad guy story. While there's no doubt that the Nazis are the brutes, there's a more subtle antagonsim between Hana and Emil which provides the real conflict amidst the backdrop of the Holocaust. There is also a cleverly-spun subplot of an assassination attempt against a high-ranking Nazi, and we don't get that full story until the end.
Visually, "Protektor" is very stylish, presenting a nostalgic 40s prism without the obvious clichés like black & white. Instead certain colors are muted while others pop out. There's a lot of high contrast which is pleasing on the eye, and there are a few moments of surrealism that add a nice original touch.
If you think you've seen all the Holocaust flicks out there, check this out. Or even if you have just a casual interest in Europe under Nazi occupation, this provides a great window on how life changed in the early years. If you don't necessarily like Holocaust flicks and just randomly picked up this movie based on its striking DVD cover (like I did), you may find it frustrating at first but ultimately it's a worthwhile experience.
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