The Anarchic Cinema of Věra Chytilová
Screening Dates
  • October 8, 2020 6:30
  • October 10, 2020 6:30
  • October 12, 2020 8:10

One of the unsung masterpieces of Chytilová’s still largely obscure post-’60s career … A devastatingly funny portrait of life in a (literally) crumbling society.”

Jesse Trussell, Brooklyn Academy of Music

A stinging social satire set against the inept construction of a Prague apartment complex, Věra Chytilová’s Panelstory rankled Communist officials with its pointed portrait of housing shortages, shoddy workmanship, and official incompetence and corruption. Desperate for even substandard shelter in this so-called worker’s paradise, the film’s characters, a motley, multigenerational cross-section of Czech society, move into the project long before its interminable construction is even remotely close to completion. Chytilová’s kaleidoscopic black comedy tackles issues of sex, violence, morality, and materialism with boldness and bluntness. Wonderfully enjoyable, hilarious, and touching all at once … We find Chytilová at the height of her powers as a filmmaker, combining her characteristically wild shooting style, farcical elements, wonderful use of music, and intricate storytelling abilities” (Kay Armatage, TIFF).