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Trailers of Czech Upcoming Documentary Films 2009/2010

September 22, the Světozor hosted the Panel of New Czech Documentary Films. The following twelve directors and producers attended the event to present their latest documentary projects to be released in 2009/2010: Helena Třeštíková, Karel Vachek, Jan Gogola, Karel Žalud, Jan Šikl, David Čálek, Erika Hníková, Břetislav Rychlík, Lucie Králová, Nataša Dudinski, Martin Řezníček and Thomas Feierabend. Trailers for their upcoming films are now posted on our website.



Where:
Světozor Cinema, Prague
When: September 22, 2009, 11 am
Organizers: Institute of Documentary Film / Jihlava IDFF / Czech Film Center


Czech Documentary Films 2009-2010, a Czech/English catalogue with details on 20 selected new releases and nearly 100 upcoming Czech docs, will be available in print and also as a PDF accessible at http://dokweb.net/en/? and www.filmcenter.cz.

Introductory remarks on Czech documentary film 2009/2010:
Diana Tabakov, IDF
Markéta Šantrochová, Czech Film Center
Andrea Prenghyová, IDF
Hana Rezková, IDF
Marek Hovorka, Jihlava IDFF

 

Projects presented at the event:



THE PHANTOM OF LIBERTY II
D: Karel Žalud
Presented by: Karel Žalud, Jiří Konečný – BREATHLESS, Dominance of the Moment

In the so-called global age, man is caught in the trap of time he has set for himself and then got stuck in it along with his freedom. This experimental documentary explores the physical qualities of time as well as its crucial impact on our actions, perception, social rituals and our outlook on the world.

This film is part of the ‘Breathless – Dominance of the Moment’ documentary film project. A project of Zipp – German-Czech Cultural Projects, the Institute of Documentary Film, Prague, and DOK Leipzig. Zipp is an initiative of the German Federal Cultural Foundation. Czech and German films developed under this project will premiere in Autumn 2009 at the international festivals DOK Leipzig and the Jihlava IDFF.

 

I LOVE MY BORING LIFE
D: Jan Gogola
Presented by: Jan Gogola, Jiří Konečný – BREATHLESS, Dominance of the Moment

The diary of a grandmother from the Prague neighborhood of Zbraslav as a diary of eternity. Using informal language, for five years grandmother Alena Němcová from Zbraslav has been writing down weather forecasts, dreams, morning exercise, recipes, regular house bustle, global events as well as notes concerning relationships, religion and the general spirit of the age. In a way, she continues in the tradition started by her mother-in-law, Jiřina Němcová, who also kept a diary in the same house from 1977 to 1997, providing a makeshift script for The Diary of Grandmother Němcová made in 1999. Both diaries are intriguing for the ways they connect matters of a private, family, social, real and also surreal nature. This sequel can be seen as a time-space capsule in a single house that uses this continuity to expand into multiple different worlds. Like in the first film, the film aims to show that the borders of the world are defined by the borders of our perception. 

This film is part of the ‘Breathless – Dominance of the Moment’ documentary film project. A project of Zipp – German-Czech Cultural Projects, the Institute of Documentary Film, Prague, and DOK Leipzig. Zipp is an initiative of the German Federal Cultural Foundation. Czech and German films developed under this project will premiere in Autumn 2009 at the international festivals DOK Leipzig and the Jihlava IDFF.

 

 


 

KATKA
D: Helena Třeštíková,
Presented by: Kateřina Černá, Negativ

A long-term observational documentary about drugs, love, prison and responsibility. Thirteen years in the lives of a group of drug addicts who live on the streets of Prague, hustling up drugs and stealing. I first met Katka in 1996 at a drug rehab centre. After half a year, she ran away from the centre. I looked for her and found her in the company of a heroin addict, Láďa. Cut to 2007. Láďa serves prison time for attempted murder. Katka is now 30 years old and lives in a squat with her boyfriend Roman. We find out that Katka is pregnant and about to undertake the most difficult trial of her life. Can she stay clean and look after her child? This film is about the replenishing power of life, about motherhood and about children born into this world addicted to drugs.

 

 



THE CHILDREN OF OUR PARENTS
D: Thomas Feierabend
Presented by: Radim Procházka, producer

Tom Feierabend is a California-based filmmaker who spent his youth surfing in the Pacific Ocean. He is also the grandson of politician Ladislav Feierabend whose memoirs published in the 1990s belonged among bestselling titles. Ladislav Feierabend was in the protectorate and exile governments; after 1948, he managed to flee the country and settled down in the United States. He was among the major proponents of non-socialist agriculture; in mid-1930s Czechoslovakia was a country with the highest number of farm collectives in the world. When he was little, Tom heard a lot about the idyllic life in pre-war Czechoslovakia. The ending sounds almost like a fairy tale; in the early 1990s, the filmmaker started a family in his grandfather's house in Prague and then decided to make a film about his roots that would blend big and small history. However, the film will definitely not be a fairy tale as Tom's insistence in interviewing his relatives rubs against their desire to keep the image of their famous ancestor unblemished. The perspective of an American intellectual on Czechoslovak history promises to offer unique and original insights. Fifteen years of research and shooting in police and history archives, interviews with emigrants as well as those who stayed behind, will offer a broad reflection of our relationship to recent history. Besides the Feierabend family, Meda Mládková, Milan Uhde and Pavel Žáček will be among those to appear in the film.

 



THE OBSCURANTIST AND HIS LINEAGE
D: Karel Vachek
Presented by: Karel Vachek

A feature-length film about politics, economics and social relationships, with a view to other cultures in the Czech Republic - the study of old-fashioned phenomena such as dowsing; parallel worlds and gates to other universes; time machines; involuntary spontaneous invisibility; colour therapy; living and dead water; hibernation; magic mushrooms; UFOs, etc. Life in the Czech Republic, within the broader context of globalization, is seen through the crooked mirror of non-rational and expanded perception of reality: psychics and mediums contribute to the film and draw connections to social reality.




SHITCREDIT
D: Martin Řezníček
Presented by: Martin Řezníček

You take out a loan and then have to pay several times over the loaned sum or you lose your house for a few thousand or you find yourself in debt for the rest of your life. Chang the rapper talks about "Shitcredit". Taking a glimpse into the workings of the system, this film follows the stories of people who are in debt owing to their own bad decision making but also those who are the victims of loan sharks in the poorly regulated loan market.

 

 


 

ETERNAL SEEKERS
D: Pavel Koutecký, Jan Šikl
Presented by: Jan Šikl; Jarmila Poláková, Asociace Film a Sociologie

Portraits of four people filmed in the course of twenty turbulent years in the post-communist Czech Republic. Jan Ruml – dissident – politician – husband – student – manager – journalist; Michal  Kocáb – musician – husband-father – politician – businessman – politician; Kryštof Rimský – student-rebel - rebel – student – actor – husband – father; Martin Mejstřík - student - journalist – husband – father – gardener – senator – ex-senator. In 1989, the Velvet Revolution in Czechoslovakia brought the four heroes of the film to the limelight. Since then, the camera has followed them as they pass through unexpected stages in their post-revolutionary lives. Their personal and family dramas intertwined with their public and political engagements offer a glimpse into the last twenty years in the post-communist Czech Republic. Director Pavel Koutecký worked on the film from 1990 till 2006. Jan Šikl has been filming since 2008.



REVOLUTION GIRLS
D: Nataša Dudinski, Taťána Marková
Presented by: Nataša Dudinski; Jarmila Poláková, Asociace Film a Sociologie

Revolution Girls is the story of one generation of Czech women who took part in the 1989 Velvet Revolution. Though their lives took different directions after the student strike in 1989, they still share some of the zeal required to achieve the things they believe in. Jana, a representative in the EU Parliament, is passionate about saving the world. Alena writes one book after another, searching the past for hints that would inspire the present. Alice is a successful entrepreneur who raises an adopted Roma daughter and fulfills her childhood dream of having a big family. Pavla puts her energy into a career in the music business while searching for her place in life. Are they living their dreams? How many revolutions does a woman go through by the time she is forty? What can their stories tell us about the time and place they live in?

 

 

HEAVEN, HELL, EARTH, PARADISE
D: David Čálek
Presented by: David Čálek; Martina Šantavá, HBO

A film mosaic recording the lives of four people of differing age, lifestyle and profession. What they have in common is their positive attitude towards pain in its various forms. The BDSM community to which our four protagonists belong has existed in the Czech Republic for many years and can trace its roots back to communist times. A volcano of erotic services erupted in the Czech Republic in the 1990s, as if it had been waiting only for the Iron Curtain to fall to inundate society with brothels, sex shops and escort services. The BDSM community did not experience such an explosion; instead, it has remained  low key, thus retaining more freedom and remaining an underground organization without any hierarchy, a fellowship of pleasure conspirators able to recognize each other by signs known only to them. Even though the media sometimes publish sensational reports from wild parties, they cover only the tip of the iceberg, having no interest in what lies below the surface. BDSM is an abbreviation for a community of people who indulge in many different kinds of pain, ranging from tattoo, piercing and branding to bondage, S&M, electro stimulation and other forms of “the freedom of pleasure and its possibilities.”

 




NO WEDDING VILLAGE
D: Erika Hníková
Presented by: Jiří Konečný

A film about a generation of singles in their 30s who live in a medium-sized Slovak village and about its mayor who, in an effort to maintain the population, intends to bring them together at any cost. He embarks on an experiment that we follow throughout the film. A 21st century social engineering project in a documentary situational comedy taking place over the period of one year.

 




CIRCUS HAVEL
D: Břetislav Rychlík
Presented by: Břetislav Rychlík

Václav Havel makes a stage comeback, in a six-month project of the Husa na provázku Theatre, with the programme culminating in an on-stage montage of Václav Havel’s dramas, ranging from The Garden Party to Leaving. The film version of the project opens up a range of themes that combine culture and history, power and outsidership, theatre and life, dreams and reality; it aims to be a return to the artistic roots of Václav Havel the playwright.

 






THE CZECH HUMP
D: Lucie Králová
Presented by: Lucie Králová 

A panoptical probe into Czech national pride. A report about the contemporary image of the Snezka phenomenon. Five years ago the dry rot destroyed the house on top of the Czech Republic's highest mountain Snezka, situated on the border with Poland, in an area that used to be part of Germany. The event invoked heated debates over the future plans for the location regarding Czech national identity. What should represent our country on top of our highest mountain? The result is surprising: the experimental house with its own ZIP code and a small halo, which can be adapted to changing weather conditions, has caused many problems and it is rather controversial.

 

 

 

Contact:
Diana Tabakov
Co-ordinator of Czech Docs
Institute of Documentary Film
diana@docuinter.net