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26 Nov 2006 00:00 - 30 Nov 2006 00:00

From Prague to Hollywood: The Cinematography of Miroslav Ondricek

A cinematic homage to Miroslav Ondricek, director of photography. Starting his career on Milos Foreman's Competition, his exquisite camerawork has united such gems as Amadeus, A Blonde in Love, If...., Slaughterhouse-Five, Intimate Lighting and The Firemen's Ball.




The Firemen's Ball
Horí, má panenko

Sun 26 Nov, 4.30pm

Milos Forman | Czechoslovakia 1967 | 1h14m | 35mm | Czech with English subtitles | U
Cast: Jan Vostrcil, Josef Sebanek, Josef Kolb, Frantisek Debelka, Jan Stöckl.

The scene is the annual firemen's ball in a small Czech town. The action concerns the committee's efforts to round up girls for a beauty contest, the winner to make the presentation of a golden hatchet to their 86-year-old retiring president. As the ball proceeds, a patchwork of comic incident unfolds: the committee, finding girls too shy and mothers too ferocious, are busily trying to hijack any girl, pretty or not; an anxious official watches as the lottery prizes mysteriously vanish one by one; and the ancient president, desperate to slip away for a pee, is kept waiting and waiting. Quietly, irresistibly funny.






Sun 26 Nov, 1.15pm

Milos Forman | Czech Republic 1963 | 1h17m | 35mm | Czech with English subtitles | PG
Cast: Vaclav Blumenfeld, Hana Hegerova, Ladislav Jakim, Vera Kresadlova.

Beautifully observed comic docu-drama, co-written by Milos Forman and Ivan Passer, about the politics of an orchestral rehearsal and a talent competition. The film is shot cinema-verite style, reminiscent of the Free Cinema series of documentaries being made in Britain during the same period – but the humour is sharper and there is an added sense of youthful rebellion which recalls Scorpio Rising and The Wild One. It should come as no surprise that cameraman Miroslav Ondricek went on to work with Lindsay Anderson, one of the key exponents of the Free Cinema movement. A key film of the Czech new wave.





A Blonde in Love
Lasky Jedne Plavovlasky

Mon 27 Nov, 6.30pm

Milos Forman | Czech Republic 1965 | 1h22m | 35mm | Czech with English subtitles | PG
Cast: Hana Brejchova, Vladamir Pucholt, Vladamir Mensik.

Another one of Forman's brilliant observational comedies, co-scripted with Ivan Passer. Two young people meet and spend a joyous night of passion together, but the girl takes things more seriously than she should and when she turns up at the boy's family home chaos ensues. He feels trapped, she feels betrayed and his parents don't know what to feel.





Intimate Lighting
Intimni osvetleni

Tue 28 Nov, 6.10pm

Ivan Passer | Czech Republic 1966 | 1h11m | 35mm | Czech with English subtitles | PG
Cast: Zdenek Bezusek, Karel Blazek, Miroslav Cvrk.

A near perfect little movie about a weekend in the country for two muscians, who play and get drunk together. It is sometimes too easy to forget the importance of Ivan Passer to the Czech New Wave, having co-scripted Competition, A Blonde in Love and The Firemen's Ball with Milos Forman and directed and co-scripted this little gem of a picture, brimfull of the lyricism and humanity that made his early films such a delight.





Amadeus – The Director's Cut

Wed 29 Nov, 7.50pm

Milos Forman | USA 19842002 | 3h | 35mm | PG
Cast: F Murray Abraham, Tom Hulce, Elizabeth Berridge, Simon Callow, Roy Dotrice, Christine Ebersole, Jeffrey Jones.

Antonio Salieri, one of the most competent composers of his age, finds himself in competition with Mozart. This turns him into a hate-filled monster whose only aim in life is to ruin his more talented colleague. None the less Salieri emerges as the more tragic and sympathetic character, partly because he alone, of all his contemporaries, can appreciate this almost perfect music, and – more importantly, perhaps – because he speaks up for all of us whose talents fall short of our desires.






Thu 30 Nov, 6.15pm

George Roy Hill | USA 1972 | 1h43m | 35mm | 18
Cast: Michael Sacks, Ron Leibman, Eugene Roche, Valerie Perrine.

An adaptation of Kurt Vonnegut's classic novel about Billie Pilgrim, who has become 'unstuck in time'. Billie's time-tripping between the 1945 bombing of Dresden, his American bourgeoise present as an optometrist and his sci-fi fantasy future on the planet Tralfamadore develop as three concurrent narratives in this haunting and darkly humorous drama.






Box office: 0131 228 2688

Prog. Information: 0131 228 2689


Ticket Deal
See any three films in the Miroslav Ondricek season for £12/£7.50 concessions, or all six for £18/£12 concessions.





30 Kensington Palace Gardens
W8 4QY London
United Kingdom


From: 26 Nov 2006 00:00
To: 30 Nov 2006 00:00


Czech Centre

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