We Are One Retrospective – Offerings from Czech Republic

I’ve been enamoured of Czech cinema for some time now, but still have a very minor familiarity with it. Because of this, viewing the contributions of the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival to the We Are One Global Film Festival was of especial interest. One offer was one feature film and a curated selection of four student short films from Future Frames, KVIFF’s spotlight on up-and-coming filmmakers.

Adela Has Not Had Supper Yet [Adéla jeste nevecerela] (1977, Czechoslovakia, 102 min)

A Czech detective parody featuring pulp detective Nick Carter in a case which involves a carnivorous plant trained to eat people upon hearing a Mozart lullaby by a believed-dead master criminal whose entire career was a build up to taking revenge on his botany teacher for giving him a bad mark which spoiled his chances with a girl. Just the sort of thing I enjoy! The plant is animated by Jan Švankmajer, the script is by Jiří Brdečka (who wrote Karel Zeman’s wonderful adaptations of Jules Verne and Baron Munchausen), and the music is by Luboš Fišer (Valerie and Her Week of Wonders). Very happy to have seen this!

Peacock: A Comedy in Three Acts [Furiant] (2015, Czech Republic, 27 min)

My personal favourite of these short films, a funny speculation on the early years of a famous Czech realist playwright, constructing a narrative around the scanty known facts and labelled with scientific subtitles.

Everything Will Be Okay [Alles wird gut] (2015, Germany, 30 min)

A divorced father picks up his daughter for the latest custody visit and surreptitiously arranges during their day out to flee the country with her. Sad, becomes stressful, but resolves.

Tenants [Lokatorki] (2015, Poland, 30 min)

Even more stressful story about a woman who buys a flat only to find the previous occupant (who is also a full-time carer for her adult daughter) hasn’t moved out and refuses to move.

Warm Comedy about Depression, Madness and Unfulfilled Dreams [Hrejivá komédia o depresii, šialenstve a nesplnených snoch] (2017, Slovakia, 22 min)

Lighter touch than the last two, but conveys the spiky irritability of the family a bit too well. At least it all comes out well in the end.

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