The tales of Baron Munchhausen receive a unique cinematic adaptions in the hands of the great Czech animator Karel Zeman. He takes the famous adventure stories and designs them in combination with Victorian images and expressionist amusements, resulting in a one-time cinematic celebration.
"Why do I make movies? I'm looking for terra incognita, a land on which no filmmaker has yet set foot, a planet where no director has planted his flag of conquest, a world that exists only in fairy tales."
Film director and animator
Dear friends of Czech film,
It is August again and with it comes the annual Czech Film Week festival.
We consistently introduce works by talented young directors and producers to the Israeli audience. This year we are featuring some of the output of the producer Jan Macola, who will be our guest. We are opening with WE ARE NEVER ALONE, a dark drama with elements of grotesque black humor by the helmer-writer Petr Vaclav, which became a sensation at the Berlin IFF (we are also showing Vaclav’s other recent film, THE WAY OUT). If you need to restore your faith in humanity a little and challenge your perception of what is ‘normal’, then make sure not to miss the feature documentary NORMAL AUTISTIC FILM, a deeply compassionate, wonderfully funny and beautifully shot insight into the world of autistic children by Mira Janek. Deservedly rewarded with the Czech Academy Award for best documentary, it is one of my personal favorites. Olmo Omerzu’s FAMILY FILM travelled to and collected prizes at festivals the world over, and I hope you too will enjoy this eccentric mix of the comic and serious. I, OLGA HEPNAROVA is a true story of a woman who mowed down eight strangers on a Prague sidewalk in 1973. Screened at the Haifa IFF, the film gains additional meanings in the Israeli context, so we decided to include it in the Czech Film Week as well.
We are inching closer toward closing a coproduction agreement between the Czech Republic and Israel, so alongside our selection we are also showing THE MAN WITH AN IRON HEART, a Czech-themed story of the assassination of the brutal architect of the Final Solution, Reinhard Heydrich, in Prague in 1942. Not everyone was involved in the resistance though, as the fascinating documentary DOOMED BEAUTY about the most famous Czech actress of the WWII period, and her love affair with the Nazi propagandist Goebbels, shows.
The Czech Centre has a close cooperation with the Train Theatre and the International Puppet Festival in Jerusalem. This year the festival celebrates the spirit of Karel Zeman’s amazing, fantastic world of animation that inspired such filmmakers as Steven Spielberg or Terry Gilliam. It is therefore fitting we pay homage to his genius during Czech Film Week too. Get ready for a true cinematic gem – you will surely be mesmerized by the beautifully restored THE FABULOUS WORLD OF BARON MUNCHHAUSEN, and will marvel at the unique mix of acting and animation and the elaborate tricks invented well before the time of computers.
I believe the selection is wide enough to find a film to suit your taste, so now just lean back and enjoy the movies of Czech Film Week 2017!
Czech Centre Tel Aviv