"Czech New Wave Set"
Directed by Vera Chytilova/Jaromil Jires/Jiri Menzel/Oldrich Lipsky/Frantisek
Five vital works of 1960's Czech cinema.
Daisies (Vera Chytilova, 1966, 74 mins.): Two uninhibited young
women (both named Marie) turn against the numbing state of society in a
madcap flurry of pranks and material destruction. "...the most adventurous
and anarchic Czech movie of the 1960s" (The Faber Companion to Foreign
The Joke (Jaromil Jires, 1968, 80 mins.): Based on a novel by Milan
Kundera (The Unbearable Lightness of Being) and co-scripted by the
author, this dark and ironic film was shot during the Prague Spring of
1968. After ending a postcard with a humorous reference to Trotsky, a
young man is sentenced to years of hard labor for his joke. Upon his
release, he sets out to take revenge.
Capricious Summer (Jiri Menzel, 1967, 74 mins.): Three middle-aged
friends in a sleepy, second-class resort town are thrown into a state of
sexual longing and frustration when a tightrope walker arrives with his
beautiful young assistant. Director Jiri Menzel (Closely Watched Trains)
also plays the tightrope walker in this gentle, wistful comedy.
Lemonade Joe (Oldrich Lipsky, 1964, 87 mins.): At the Trigger Whiskey
Saloon, a beautiful temperance crusader is threatened by hard-drinking
villains. Riding to her rescue is Lemonade Joe, who--as his moniker
indicates--doesn't touch the "fire water." A sweet and often very funny
spoof of Hollywood westerns.
Adelheid (Frantisek Vlacil, 1969, 99 mins.): Set in the aftermath
of World War II, this powerful drama concerns a former Czech soldier who
inherits a manor once owned by a German family. He falls in love with
Adelheid, the daughter of the previous owner, who has been reduced to
servant status. "...a profound analysis of the human distortions caused by
ideology" (Peter Hames, Central Europe Review). All films in Czech
with English subtitles. Five-tape set.