Life and Extraordinary Adventures of Private Ivan Chonkin
The Life and Extraordinary Adventures of Private Ivan Chonkin is a 1994 comedy drama film directed by Jiří Menzel. The film entered the competition at the 51st Venice International Film Festival, in which it won the President of the Italian Senate's Gold Medal, it is based on the novel The Life and Extraordinary Adventures of Private Ivan Chonkin by Vladimir Voinovich and the scenario by Zdeněk Svěrák. It is a coproduction between Russia, Czech Republic, United Kingdom and Italy; the film is set in 1941 in the Soviet Union before and during the first months of World War II. In the small village of Red makes a forced landing military plane U-2; the command decided to put him near the hour. The military unit near the village of Red served ordinary Ivan Chonkin. Unpretentious and simple soldiers, who looked far from exemplary soldier, serving his military duty in the economic division of the regiment, doing what works in the kitchen, carrying loads on a horse, it was his command post near to detach aircraft in the village of Red.
Chonkin comes after a while begins to cohabit with rustic pochtalonkoy Nura. Soon he moved into her hut. Gennady Nazarov – Ivan Chonkin Zoya Buryak – Nyura Vladimir Ilyin – Golubev Aleksei Zharkov – Gladishev Valeri Zolotukhin – Kilin Zinovy Gerdt – Moisei Stalin Sergei Garmash – Milyaga Maria Vinogradova – Granny Dunia Yuri Dubrovin – Volkov Marián Labuda – Opalikov Aleksandr Garin – Svintsov Menzel, Jirí. "The art of laughter and survival". Index on Censorship. 24: 119–122. Doi:10.1080/03064229508536003. Life and Extraordinary Adventures of Private Ivan Chonkin on IMDb
Larks on a String
Larks on a String is a 1969 Czech film directed by Jiří Menzel. The film was banned by the Czechoslovak government, but was released in 1990 after the fall of the Communist regime, it tells the stories of various characters considered bourgeois by Czechoslovakia's communist government in the 1950s, who have been forced to work in a junkyard for the purposes of re-education. It won the Golden Bear at the 40th Berlin International Film Festival. Rudolf Hrušínský as Trustee Vlastimil Brodský as Professor Václav Neckář as Pavel Hvezdár Jitka Zelenohorská as Jitka Jaroslav Satoranský as Guard Andel Vladimír Šmeral as Minister Ferdinand Krůta as Kudla František Řehák as Drobecek Leoš Suchařípa as Public prosecutor Vladimír Ptáček as Mlíkar Eugen Jegorov as Saxophonist Naďa Urbánková as Lenka Věra Křesadlová as Convict Věra Ferbasová as Convict Jiřina Štěpničková as Pavel's mother Larks on a String on IMDb
The Fall of Berlin (film)
The Fall of Berlin is a 1950 Soviet war film and an example of Soviet realism, in two parts separated in the manner of a serial, directed by Mikheil Chiaureli, released by the Mosfilm Studio. The script was written by Pyotr Pavlenko, the musical score composed by Dmitri Shostakovich, it starred Mikheil Gelovani as Joseph Stalin. Portraying the history of the Second World War with a focus on a positive depiction of the role the Soviet leader played in the events, it is considered one of the most important representations of Stalin's cult of personality. Alexei Ivanov, a shy steel factory worker surpasses his production quota and is chosen to receive the Order of Lenin and to have a personal interview with Joseph Stalin. Alexei has difficulties approaching her; when he meets Stalin, who tends his garden, the leader helps him to understand his emotions and tells him to recite poetry to her. They both have a luncheon with the rest of the Soviet leadership in Stalin's home. After returning from Moscow, Alexei confesses his love to Natasha.
While they are both having a stroll in a wheat field, their town is attacked by the Germans, who invade the Soviet Union. Alexei loses his consciousness and sinks into a coma; when he awakes, he is told that the Germans are at the gates of Moscow. In the capital, Stalin plans the defense of the city, explaining to the demoralized Georgy Zhukov how to deploy his forces. Alexei volunteers for the Red Army, takes part in the parade in the Red Square and in the Battle of Moscow. At Berlin, after receiving the blessings of his allies – Turkey, the Vatican and Japan – and watching a long column of Soviet slaves-laborers, Natasha among them, Adolf Hitler is furious to hear that Moscow has not fallen, he dismisses Walther von Brauchitsch from his office and offers the command of the army to Gerd von Rundstedt. Hitler orders to attack Stalingrad. In the meanwhile, Hermann Göring negotiates with British capitalist Bedstone, who supplies Germany with needed materials. After the Soviet victory in Stalingrad, Vasily Chuikov tells Ivanov that Stalin is always with the Red Army.
The storyline leaps to the Yalta Conference, where Stalin and his Western Allies debate the future of the war. Stalin asks his generals who will take they or the Western Allies; the generals answer. Alexei's Guards Army advances towards Berlin, while Hitler has a nervous breakdown and demands that his soldiers fight to the end; the Germans plan to execute the inmates of the concentration camp in which Natasha is held before the arrival of the Red Army, but Alexei's unit liberates the prisoners before they carry through their design. Natasha faints, he does not find her. Hitler and the German leadership fall into despair and lose their grip on reality the closer the Soviets get to Berlin. Hitler orders to flood the subway stations as the Soviets approach, he marries Eva Braun and commits suicide. Gen. Hans Krebs begs for a ceasefire. Stalin orders to accept only an unconditional surrender. Alexei is chosen to carry the Victory Banner, alongside Meliton Kantaria, their division storms the Reichstag and the three hoist the banner atop of it.
The Germans surrender and Red Army soldiers from throughout the USSR celebrate victory. Stalin's plane lands in Berlin, he is greeted by an enthusiastic crowd of peoples of "all the nations", holding posters with his picture and waving various nations' flags. Stalin carries a speech. Standing in the crowd and Natasha recognize each other and are reunited. Natasha asks Stalin to let her kiss him on the cheek, they hug while prisoners praise Stalin in numerous languages; the film ends with Stalin wishing all happiness. Stalin's cult of personality, which began to manifest itself in the late 1930s, was marginalized during World War II; the premier's character appeared in only two pictures during the war. However, as victory seemed secure, Stalin tightened his control over every aspect of the Soviet society, including cinema. After 1945, his cult returned to the screen with greater intensity than before, he was credited as the sole architect of Germany's defeat. Denise J. Youngblood wrote that shortly afterwards, there remained only three kinds of war heroes: "the dead, the maimed and Stalin."
Mikheil Chiaureli, Stalin's favourite director, writer Pyotr Pavlenko have collaborated to create the 1946 personality cult picture The Vow. The Soviet Minister of Cinema, Ivan Bolshakov, instructed them both to begin work on The Fall of Berlin shortly after the release of The Vow in July 1946; the film was conceived as the Mosfilm studio's gift to Stalin for his official 70th birthday, to be held on 21 December 1949. The Fall was supposed to be part of a cycle of ten films about the premier's role in World War II, entitled Stalin's Ten Blows, though not corresponding with the eponymous series of Eastern Front campaigns; the project was only fulfilled until Stalin's death. As with all films in which his character made an appearance, Stalin took a keen interest in the work on The Fall of Berlin; the premier intervened in Pavlenko's writing, read the screenplay's manuscript and corrected several grammatical mistakes.
Cutting It Short
Cutting It Short is a 1980 Czechoslovak comedy film directed by Jiří Menzel. It is based on the novel Postřižiny by Czech writer Bohumil Hrabal; the story is set in a brewery in a Czech small town. The film is an evocation of the childhood memories of Bohumil Hrabal in his provincial town of Nymburk, dominated by the local brewery; the main actors of the film, uncle Pepin and Maryška, are based on real family members of Hrabal: Maryška on his mother and uncle Pepin on his real uncle, who came to stay two weeks in the town but remained for forty years. His spontaneous stories influenced a lot Hrabal's literary work; the film was entered into the main competition at the 38th edition of the Venice Film Festival. According to the film critic and historian Peter Hames, Cutting It Short, which quotes or refers to silent comedy, is one of the best post-Tati comedies. Theodor Pištěk designed the costumes for the film. Magda Vášáryová as Maryška Jiří Schmitzer as Francin Jaromír Hanzlík as Pepin Rudolf Hrušínský as Dr. Gruntorád Petr Čepek as Pán de Giogi Oldřich Vlach as Ruzicka František Řehák as Vejvoda Miloslav Štibich as Bernádek Alois Liškutín as Sefl Pavel Vondruška as Lustig Rudolf Hrušínský as stable boy Miroslav Donutil as scrub Oldřich Vízner as Doda Cervinka Cutting It Short on IMDb
Sherrybaby is a 2006 American drama film written and directed by Laurie Collyer. Screened at the Sundance Film Festival on January 25, 2006, the film received a limited release in the United States on September 8, 2006. Sherry Swanson, a young woman, released from prison and is recovering from a heroin addiction, is trying to rebuild her life on the outside. Above all, she wants to repair her relationship with her young daughter, but finds the challenges more daunting than she had expected, her daughter recognizes her and no longer calls her "mommy", the halfway house where she lives has a curfew that interferes with her ability to visit her family, her relationship with her family has become tense and strained. The story takes place in New Jersey. Several towns are mentioned during the film, including Mountainside and South Kearny. A NJ Transit bus and New Jersey license plates were visible during the movie. In between trips to visit her daughter and her job at a youth center, Sherry attends Alcoholics Anonymous meetings in an effort to beat back her addiction to heroin.
She strikes up a relationship with a fellow addict she meets at Alcoholics Anonymous. The stresses of her damaged relationships with her family, satisfying her parole officer, finding a way to reconnect with her daughter soon prove overwhelming. Sherry soon starts using drugs again, putting her parole at risk. Struggling to maintain a grip on her life, Sherry breaks down and admits to her brother that she knows she needs help. Maggie Gyllenhaal as Sherry Swanson Brad William Henke as Bobby Swanson Sam Bottoms as Bob Swanson, Sr. Kate Burton as Marcia Swanson Giancarlo Esposito as Parole Officer Hernandez Danny Trejo as Dean Walker Michelle Hurst as Dorothy Washington Caroline Clay as Parole Officer Murphy Bridget Barkan as Lynette Swanson Ryan Simpkins as Alexis Parks Stephen Peabody as Mr. Monroe Sherrybaby received positive reviews from critics. Review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reports that 74% of 66 critics gave the film a positive review, for an average rating of 6.7/10. The site's consensus is that "Maggie Gyllenhaal delivers riveting performance as a recovering drug addict in a depressing and believable movie."
Metacritic, which assigns a rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, calculated a "generally favorable" average score of 66, based on 18 reviews. Entertainment Weekly praised the film as "emotionally arresting" and "authentic and moving", describes Gyllenhaal as "such a miracle of an actress that she makes you respond to the innocence of Sherry's desperate, selfish destruction." The Christian Science Monitor gave a positive review of the film, complimenting Collyer's "vivid eye for detail and the small, telling human moments that make a movie resonate with audiences". Sherrybaby on IMDb Sherrybaby at AllMovie Sherrybaby at Box Office Mojo Sherrybaby at Rotten Tomatoes Sherrybaby at Metacritic
Ma vie en rose
Ma vie en rose is a 1997 Belgian drama film directed by Alain Berliner. It tells the story of Ludovic, a child, seen by family and community as a boy, but communicates being a girl; the film depicts Ludovic's family struggling to accept this transgressive gender expression. The film was selected as the Belgian entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 70th Academy Awards, but was not accepted as a nominee; when the Fabre family move into their dream house with wonderful neighbors, everything seems perfect except for one thing – the youngest child Ludovic wishes to live as a girl. The rest of the family humor her as best they can, rationalizing that Ludovic is only trying to find her identity and will soon be over it. Trouble begins when Ludovic befriends Jérôme, the son of her father's boss, expresses a desire to marry him when Ludovic is a girl; when visiting Jérôme's house, Ludovic enters his sister's room and puts on one of her dresses, not realizing that the sister is deceased and the room was kept in memory of her.
Jérôme's mother sees the rest of the neighbors are horrified. The community turns against Ludovic and, by extension, the rest of the Fabre family. After Ludovic stands in as Snow White in a school play, the parents of the other students send in a petition to have her expelled. Ludovic's father, under strain as an employee of Jérôme's father, is unable to cope and causes conflict within the family. After a bad argument, Ludovic attempts to mend the situation by hiding in a freezer to commit suicide, she is allowed to wear a skirt to a neighborhood party. While the other neighbors greet her warmly, Ludo's father gets fired the next day and finds his house spray-painted with graffiti. Ludo runs out of the house, distraught. Hanna, Ludovic's mother, blames her for everything, she wants to set Ludo straight, so she cuts her hair to make her look like her brothers. Ludo resents her mother for doing this deciding that she wants to live with her grandmother; when Ludo and her grandmother go visit her parents one weekend, the father announces that he has a new job, but it is out of town and they have to move.
At their new house, Ludovic is befriended by Christine "Chris" Delvigne, a young girl who prefers to be seen as a boy. Chris' mother invites Ludovic to Chris' dress-up birthday party, which Ludo attends in a musketeer outfit. Chris, unhappy in a princess outfit, asks Ludo to swap and has the other young party guests force Ludo to do so upon refusal; when Ludovic's mother sees her in the dress, she fears that their troubles are beginning again and lashes out by hitting Ludo until the other party guests restrain her. Hanna follows Ludovic to a billboard where she is shocked to see Ludo in the picture, running away with Pam, the protagonist of a program she used to watch; when she tries to follow her, she falls through awakens at home. She and Ludovic's father assure Ludo that she may wear skirts from now on. In turn, Ludo assures her mother that she never intended to run away with Pam. Hannah, happy to see her, accepts Ludo's identity and says that regardless what she believes to be, she is still her child.
Although internationally presented as a Belgian film because of the nationality of Berliner, its director and co-screenwriter, the film is an international co-production between companies in Belgium, the United Kingdom and France – the majority of the production work was done by the French independent film house Haut et Court and the shooting took place south of Paris, near the commune of Évry. The color timing in the film is significant: it changes as parents exit from the school play, switching to cold blue tones. In the United States the film received an R rating by the Motion Picture Association of America, an unusual decision because the film has minimal sexual content, minimal violence, mild language; those opposed to the rating believe. The film won the Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Language Film, it won the Crystal Globe award at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival. Ma vie en rose on IMDb Ma vie en rose at Rotten Tomatoes Ma vie en rose at AllMovie Ma vie en rose at Box Office Mojo Sony Pictures Section on the film Why is Ma Vie en Rose rated R
Closely Watched Trains
Watched Trains is a 1966 Czechoslovak film directed by Jiří Menzel and is one of the best-known products of the Czechoslovak New Wave. It was released in the United Kingdom as Closely Observed Trains, it is a coming-of-age story about a young man working at a train station in German-occupied Czechoslovakia during World War II. The film is based on a 1965 novel by Bohumil Hrabal, it was filmed on location in Central Bohemia. Released outside Czechoslovakia during 1967, it won the Best Foreign Language Oscar at the 40th Academy Awards in 1968; the young Miloš Hrma, who speaks with misplaced pride of his family of misfits and malingerers, is engaged as a newly trained station guard in a small railway station during the Second World War and the German occupation of Czechoslovakia. He admires himself in his new uniform, looks forward, like his prematurely retired railwayman father, to avoiding real work; the sometimes pompous stationmaster is an enthusiastic pigeon-breeder with a kind wife, but is envious of the train dispatcher Hubička's success with women.
Miloš holds an as-yet platonic love for the young conductor Máša. The experienced Hubička presses for details of their relationship and realizes that Miloš is still a virgin; the idyll of the railway station is periodically disturbed by the arrival of the councillor, Zednicek, a Nazi collaborator, who spouts propaganda at the staff without success. At her initiative, Máša spends the night with Miloš, but in his youthful excitability he ejaculates prematurely before achieving penetration and is unable to perform sexually, he is saved, a young doctor explains to him that ejaculatio praecox is normal at Miloš's age. The doctor recommends Miloš to "think of something else", to seek the assistance of an experienced woman. During the nightshift, Hubička flirts with the young telegraphist, Zdenička, imprints her thighs and buttocks with the office's rubber stamps, her mother sees the stamps and complains to Hubička's superiors, the ensuing scandal helps to frustrate the stationmaster's ambition of being promoted to inspector.
The Germans and their collaborators are on edge, since their trains are being attacked by the partisans. A glamorous Resistance agent, code-named Viktoria Freie, delivers a time bomb to Hubička for use in blowing up a large ammunition train. At Hubička's request, the "experienced" Viktoria helps Miloš to resolve his sexual problem; the next day, at the crucial moment when the ammunition train is approaching, Hubička is caught up in a farcical disciplinary hearing, overseen by Zednicek, over his rubber stamping of Zdenička's backside. In Hubička's place, Miloš, liberated by his experience with Viktoria from his former passivity, takes the time bomb and drops it from a semaphore gantry, that extends transversely above the tracks, onto the train. A machine-gunner on the train, spotting Miloš, sprays him with bullets, his body falls onto the train. With the Nazi collaborator Zednicek winding up the disciplinary hearing, dismissing the Czech people as "nothing but laughing hyenas", the implicit retort to his jibe comes in the form of a huge series of explosions that destroys the train.
Now Hubička and the other railwaymen are indeed laughing — to express their joy at the blow to the Nazi occupiers — and it is left to a wistful Máša to pick up Miloš's uniform cap, hurled across the station by the power of the blast. Václav Neckář as Miloš Hrma Vlastimil Brodský as councilor Zednicek Jitka Bendová as conductor Máša Josef Somr as train dispatcher Hubička Libuše Havelková as stationmaster's wife Vladimír Valenta as stationmaster Jitka Zelenohorská as telegraphist Zdenička Naďa Urbánková as Viktoria Freie Jiří Menzel as Doctor Brabec The film is based on a 1965 novel of the same name by the noted Czech author Bohumil Hrabal, whose work Jiří Menzel had begun to adapt in 1965 in the short The Death of Mr. Balthazar, a segment from the anthology film of Hrabal stories Pearls from the Deep. Barrandov Studios first offered the film project to the more experienced directors Evald Schorm and Vera Chytilova, neither of whom saw a way to adapt the book to film, before offering it to Menzel as his feature-film debut.
Menzel and Hrabal worked together on the script, making a number of modifications to the novel. Menzel's first choice for the lead role of Milos was Vladimír Pucholt, who however was occupied filming Jiří Krejčík's Svatba jako řemen. At one point Menzel considered playing the role himself, but concluded that at 28 he was too old. Fifteen non-professional actors were tested, before the wife of Ladislav Fikar came up with the suggestion of the pop singer Václav Neckář. Menzel has related that he himself took on the cameo role of the doctor only at the last minute after the actor cast failed to show up for shooting. Filming began in late February and lasted until the end of April 1966. Locations were used around the station building in Loděnice; the association between Menzel and Hrabal was to continue. They collaborated on the script of the long-banned film Larks on a String, filmed in 1969 but not released until 1990, after Hrabal's death in 1997 Menzel filmed another of Hrabal's novels, I Served the King of England, released in 2007.
The film premiered in Czechoslovakia on 18 November 1966. Release outside Czechoslovakia took place in the following year. Bosley Crowther of The New York Times called Closely Watched Trains "as expert and moving in its way as was Jan Kadar's and Elmar Klos's The Shop on Main Street or Milos Forman's Loves of