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Institute of Documentary Film’s Activities

Founded in 2001, INSTITUTE OF DOCUMENTARY FILM (IDF) is a non-profit training and networking centre based in Prague, Czech Republic, focused on the support of Central and East European creative documentary film and its wider promotion.

We work closely with Central and East European film directors and producers and provide in-depth development support for their projects as well as international promotion.

We also work with key international festivals, broadcasters, distributors, sales agents, markets, film institutions, film schools, MEDIA Desks, training programmes, national film centres and various film portals, and serve as the GATEWAY TO EAST EUROPEAN DOCUMENTARY FILM – an indispensable source of documentary projects and films from Central and Eastern Europe.


The premiere of Helena Třeštíková's latest documentary film René takes place Thu, July 24, at 7:30pm at Světozor. Named after the protagonist, this long-term observation project for nearly 20 years followed René whose life has been split between prison time and brief periods of freedom. The film stirred a lot of interest in the documentary competition at this year's Karlovy Vary IFF.

Thursday, July 24, 2008, 7:30pm
Světozor, Vodičkova 41, Praha 1
Theatrical Release: July 24



Czech Republic 2008, 90 minutes, 35mm

Director: Helena Třeštíková
Cinematography: Martin Kubala, Petr Pešek, Stano Slušný, Marek Dvořák, Ondřej Belica, Václav Smolík, Miroslav Souček, Vlastimil Hamerník   
Sound: Vladimír Nahodil, Pavel Sádek, Jan Valouch, Václav Hejduk, Miroslav Šimčík    
Editor: Jakub Hejna    
Script Editor: Michael Třeštík, Jan Gogola ml., Martin Štoll     
Music: Tadeáš Věrčák   
Producer: Pavel Strnad, Negativ s.r.o.

This raw authentic documentary film tells the story of René whose life was being captured on camera since he was seventeen. The camera followed his hopeless journey between prison and brief periods outside the prison walls. In 2008 the film comes to an end, leaving the now 37-year-old René as a sick man who still gets in trouble with the law and who is also the author of two published books. Director Helena Třeštíková records René's personal developments against the backdrop of significant political transformations taking place in Central Europe.

René's story begins in prison under socialist posters, continues through the so-called Velvet Revolution of 1989 and gets a seemingly happy conclusion with the amnesty decree issued by President Václav Havel. Yet René soon heads back to prison and also celebrated our EU accession from behind the bars. During the years spent in prison - sentenced mainly for theft - René had his whole body covered in tattoos, escaped from prison only to be soon recaptured, burgled the director's home, was involved in a couple of romantic relationships, was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis as well as a high IQ. René displays his outlook on life by flashing his "Fuck of People" tattoo on his neck.    





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