O slavnosti a hostech (1966)
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- A Report on the Party and the Guests
- 71 min.
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Might be a bit short but it is an interesting film about people conforming to both the uneasier and the friendlier face of basically the same dominant power, their own relation to this force shifting from tolerance to active collaboration, not accepting self-chosen isolation of others.
Interesting review: http://366weirdmovies.com/115-a-report-on-the-party-and-guests-1966/
The film is a thought-provoking political allegory, posing questions we think we know the answers to, but really don’t. It’s the old story: How human beings willfully adapt to systems of control, allowing totalitarian leaders and governments to thrive. The film is just as relevant today as in 1966.
A group of middle class people are subjected to physical control and social pressure. The oppressors' superficial phrases insist on happiness and harmony, all the while posing a threat: Submit to our rules or be punished. This paradox is paralleled by the surroundings: A peaceful forest populated by singing birds becoming a crime scene of social control, manipulation and violence exerted by a nasty inquisitor (Jan Klusák) and his gangsters. This feeling of danger lurking underneath every verbal exchange creates an ominous tension.
As the chilling ending (echoing the hunting dogs in Diamonds of the Night) dawns upon you, it’s clear that Němec and Krumbachová have made a truly important and timeless work of art.
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In 5 official lists
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This movie ranks #14 in Golden Foundation of Czech and Slovak Cinema
This movie ranks #115 in 366 Weird Movies
This movie ranks #124 in The Criterion Collection's Eclipse Series
This movie ranks #185 in Harvard's Suggested Film Viewing: Narrative Films
This movie ranks #457 in Amos Vogel's Film as a Subversive Art