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Information

A.k.a.
Daisies
Year
1966
Runtime
74 min.
Director
Vera Chytilová
Genres
Drama, Comedy
Rating *
7.4
Votes *
6,790
Checks
2,355
Favs
366
Dislikes
52
Favs/checks
15.5% (1:6)
Favs/dislikes
7:1
* View IMDb information

Top comments

  1. John Milton's avatar

    John Milton

    but the whole film is on YouTube in 8 parts or so, search for daisies 1966, english subs included...

    @Johnnyg: maybe this information helps:

    Source: http://criterioncast.com/news/a-journey-through-the-eclipse-series-vera-chytilovas-daisies/

    The unconventional Daisies was the product of an unconventional filmmaker. A former philosophy and architecture student, Chytilová enrolled at FAMU in 1957, the only female in her class. There she discovered a love for improvisation, nonprofessional actors, and cinema verité—anything that rejected the idea of film as an exact science. Daisies incorporates all this and more in a wildly experimental narrative that is considered the movement’s singular feminist statement. Although Chytilová has denied that it was her intention to make a feminist film per se, it’s easy to see why decades of scholarship has made this assertion. The two teenage protagonists, Marie I and Marie II (Jitka Cerhová and Ivana Karbanová, neither of whom had any acting experience), refuse to play by the rules of the patriarchal culture around them, spending the film’s seventy-odd (very odd) minutes tearing up the world: exploiting weak-willed older men, consuming enormous amounts of food and drink, wreaking inebriated havoc, and finally descending into pure annihilation. In one of the film’s most famous sequences, they gleefully cut up a succession of phallic objects (bananas, sausages, bread rolls) with scissors. Chytilová ensures that something unexpected occurs in virtually every shot and edit, juxtaposing images with dissonant sounds, abruptly changing color filters within scenes, and fragmenting many sequences through unmotivated montage.

    On the surface, Daisies’ assemblage of outlandish scenarios enacted by two ferociously antiestablishment figures would seem to mark it as simple anarchic slapstick, like a New Wave Marx Brothers comedy. But Chytilová has called her film “a philosophical documentary in the form of a farce.” The Maries are not merely railing against a society that views them as little more than objects (in the opening scene, Marie II calls herself a panna, which translates as both “doll” and “virgin” in Czech, and the girls play with, and at one point remove, their limbs as though they were the plastic appendages of mannequins); they are also existentially angry. Early on, they decide the world is meaningless, “spoiled,” which they use as justification to spoil themselves. By refusing to cultivate a psychological connection between audience and character, and by confounding any sense of narrative momentum, Chytilová and her screenwriting partner Ester Krumbachová create protagonists who seem to have no future or past. Blank slates, they have been interpreted over the years variously as embodiments of healthy rebellion and the banality of evil. Either way, they are good representations of Chytilová’s belief that “people are primitives and aesthetes at the same time.”

    Though Daisies remains playful to its climactic orgy (a mega food fight), it is ultimately a dark, subversive work, aggressively critiquing those who might find it offensive before they even have a chance to complain: its closing dedication is to people who “get upset only over a stomped-upon bed of lettuce,” over the sounds of firing artillery.

    Unsurprisingly, Daisies was banned (partly on the grounds of food wastage)—the case for many of the era’s most daring works. Chytilová made one more movie in the sixties, The Fruit of Paradise, which was briefly released in 1969, before being pulled from theaters. At this time, the post–Prague Spring authorities were already cracking down on films with even a whiff of subversion. Like many of her fellow directors, Chytilová was blacklisted, and she wasn’t allowed to make another movie until 1976’s The Apple Game. Though she is best remembered for the shock of Daisies, Chytilová has had a long career—as a teacher and as a maker of continually challenging films. In the past decade, her most successful films have included a documentary about the life of her late Daisies collaborator Krumbachová, titled Searching for Ester (2005), and a farcical tale of a psychologist’s daily travails, Pleasant Moments (2006).
    5 years 1 month ago
  2. cinemamour's avatar

    cinemamour

    adorable 3 years ago
  3. johnnyg's avatar

    johnnyg

    I... don't get it? 5 years 1 month ago
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In 14 official lists

  1. This movie ranks #12 in Golden Foundation of Czech and Slovak Cinema
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    12
  2. This movie ranks #116 in 366 Weird Movies (Certified Weird)
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    116
  3. This movie ranks #118 in Amos Vogel's Film as a Subversive Art
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    Amos Vogel's Film as a S…

    118
  4. This movie ranks #123 in Criterion's Eclipse Collection
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    123
  5. This movie ranks #131 in iCheckMovies - Most Favorite
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    131
  6. This movie ranks #184 in Harvard University's Suggested Film Viewing List: Narrative Films (2012)
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    184
  7. This movie ranks #186 in UNESCO's Memory of the World: National Cinematic Heritage
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    UNESCO's Memory of the W…

    186
  8. This movie ranks #279 in The Story of Film: An Odyssey
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    The Story of Film: An Od…

    279
  9. This movie ranks #320 in Sight and Sound 2012 - Combined List
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    320
  10. This movie ranks #397 in Cahiers du cinéma - Yearly top 10s
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    397
  11. This movie ranks #411 in They Shoot Pictures, Don't They?
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    411
  12. This movie ranks #447 in 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die
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    447
  13. This movie ranks #536 in Jonathan Rosenbaum's Essential Films
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    536
  14. This movie ranks #695 in Halliwell's Top 1000: The Ultimate Movie Countdown
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    695
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